We Must Run Aground Upon Some Island

Paul shipwrecked on Malta. We must run aground upon some island.

In the Book of Acts, the apostle Paul traveled on a cargo ship on his way to Rome to appeal his innocence to Caesar. Because of the time of year of the voyage, it was known there was a certain amount of risk involved. Paul warned against making the voyage, but was overruled by the decision-makers.

We must run aground upon some island

The ship was caught in a great storm. Despite the efforts of the crew, they despaired for their lives. At this point, Paul addressed the crew and passengers:

“After they had gone a long time without food, Paul stood up before them and said: “Men, you should have taken my advice not to sail from Crete; then you would have spared yourselves this damage and loss. But now I urge you to keep up your courage, because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed. Last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood beside me and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.’ So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me. Nevertheless, we must run aground on some island.” (Acts 27:21-26, New International Version)

Salina Bay in Malta. We must run aground upon some island.

The book of Acts reports the ship ran aground on the island of Malta, and was destroyed. However, all 276 of the crew and passengers survived the shipwreck.

A really big iron church bell. We must run aground upon some island.

An iron bell is ringing

I share this Bible story because of what we contemplated at the 2018 Encampment of the New Message from God. We contemplated a “New World reality.” Humanity faces a future of declining resources, affected climate, environmental degradation and extraterrestrial intervention. As I pondered this New World reality, I heard the words of Paul in my mind’s ear. “We must run aground upon some island.” These words ring like a large iron bell in my head.

I realize this may seem very negative. But I wonder some things. I think other people wonder them. Is humanity’s pattern of resource consumption and environmental impact sustainable? Doesn’t any species that grows without limit die in its own poisons? “We must run aground upon some island.” I take consolation that the crew and passengers survived the shipwreck. I take hope and determination that humanity will survive its future challenges.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

I Have Been Called, Others Are Being Called

YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park, Colorado. I have been called, others are being calledThe worldwide community of the New Message from God recently gathered in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado for the 2018 Encampment. The Encampment has been an annual event from 2008 to 2016. It is now being held every two years. I have attended the Encampments in 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2018.

I have been called, others are being called

YMCA of the Rockies Assembly Hall. I have been called, others are being calledAs religious gatherings go, all the Encampments have been relatively small events. The 2018 Encampment had the most attendees of any Encampment. I take particular happiness in the fact that people gathered from 26 different countries. This is also the most of any Encampment. We may be a small community, but the phrase “worldwide community” is not an idle boast. In fact, we may be the most geographically dispersed spiritual community of our size in the world.

2018 Encampment Walking with the Messenger. I have been called, others are being called.I have been called, others are being called. The average age of Encampment attendees could be said to be “middle-aged.” And yet, at every Encampment there have been some people attending of a younger age. I have taken great encouragement in this for the future progress of the New Message from God. I recalled a portion from Step 309 of the 365 steps of Steps to Knowledge. Steps to Knowledge is the book of spiritual practice of the New Message from God. Step 309 is “The world I see is attempting to become one community.”

“Remember, you have been called and you are responding to your one true purpose. In time, others will be called and they will respond.”

I didn’t think of myself as responding to a call, when I resumed my study of Steps to Knowledge in 2010. I thought of myself as looking for a way to frame the events of my life, that didn’t hurt. But between then and now, my engagement with the New Message from God looks more like a response to a call. I don’t have a certificate of any kind saying I have been called. All I have is many small confirmations and ratifications. All I have is many instances of taking the next step, doing the next thing, showing up again. Many of my fellow attendees report similar experiences.

I have been called, others are being called. I look at this Encampment and see many people I have only known online. I look at this Encampment and I see people I have never met before, online or otherwise. I look at this Encampment and think to myself “Others are being called, and they are responding.”

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.