It’s not uncommon to speak of life as a sea or an ocean. It’s used as such in the Bible on occasion and after having sailed the seas on three different Navy vessels, I’d say that the sea itself is the symbol of uncertainty. It changes daily with the wind and the waves. One day it’s peaceful and calm; the next it’s a cauldron of confusion and disarray. The unpredictable seas can be calm, restless, and tempestuous in the same day – just as the waters of life. Vessels upon the seas are at the mercy of every wind that blows and wave that swells. The Navy has made provision for such possibilities by equipping each ship with an appropriate anchor. According to one dictionary definition an anchor is “a heavy object on a ship cast overboard to hold the vessel in a particular place.”

God knows full well the storms that we will encounter in life and He too has equipped us with an appropriate anchor. Our spiritual anchor for our souls is the believer’s hope of heaven in the midst of the storms and trials and struggles of this life. The writer of Hebrews talks to us about our hope of heaven. He refers to it as a “steadfast anchor of the soul.” (See Hebrews 6:19-20). He says “We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf…” Jesus said that he was going to prepare a place for us and promised to return to assure us of our travel from this world to His. He promises us that we too will be where He is. Our eternal destiny is not something we hang on to, but it’s something that he hangs on to for us. No storm or struggle or person can rip us free from His loving grasp.

Just as the ship’s anchor sinks into the invisible depths of the sea and finds footing, so too does our hope reach into the invisible reaches of the spiritual world and finds a sure and steadfast hold for the stability and safety for our souls. Our hope attaches itself to the certainty of the invisible world to which the promises of God link us with an unbreakable chain. Our small vessels upon a sea of turmoil and confusion can find solid ground to hold it firm. In “The Loins Girded,” J. J. Knap puts it this way, “In this way we are safe,—eternity holds on to us. We have nothing to fear,—the unchangeable God shall not let us go. Our salvation is certain,—the Savior keeps us: our hope is anchored in a ground that is both sure and steady and it shall never fail us.” The hope of heaven is our sure anchor for our souls as we sail the stormy seas.