My mom and I took my Dad’s small dinghy with a motor mounted on the back, packed a picnic lunch and set out to explore Blennerhassett Island, in the middle of the Ohio River.
Once we reached the Island, we enjoyed our picnic lunch and spent the afternoon picking up interesting pieces of drift wood, talking and laughing. It was a wonderful day!
Come evening, we gathered our treasures and getting back into the boat, set out to cross the river to the Parkersburg shore. Evening was upon us and we were enjoying the wonderful sunset as we headed shore side.
About half way to the city shoreline, the motor stopped. Mom tried to start it to no avail. We checked the gas; the tank was nearly full. Mom tried a couple of more times. I tried a couple of times. The motor never made a sputter. As the sun set, Mom and I got the oars out of the bottom of the boat and began to row.
After an hour of rowing, we were only a couple of feet closer to the shore line. Our shoulders ached from the useless effort. The night sky was twinkling with stars and the city lights on the shore line flickered at us like beacons.
We were both exhausted, the shore was no closer and the night was beginning to chill. My mom wisely said, “It will be easier to row without the weight of a useless motor pulling us back.”
In agreement in spite of the consequences, we unhitched the motor and watched it sink into the blackness of the river. We sat back down, took the oars and began to row once more. Without the weight of the useless motor, we made steady progress and soon hit shore.
Once home, we told my Dad about our adventure and how we had dropped the motor and that we were sorry. Dad hugged us both and told us that the motor wasn’t any good any more anyway, that’s why the oars were in the bottom of the boat! Mom and I laughed about our river adventure for years to come!
How often do we keep useless heavy “motors” hanging onto our spiritual boats? We know God is faithful! But, we’re afraid to let go of things that are weighing us down. Once we drop the “heavy motor” of our doubts, fears and daily struggles, it is much easier to row through the storms of life.
Matt. 11:28 Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.