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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN


No Dragons, Just God

Some years ago I had the opportunity to visit the British Museum in London, England. There are so many spiritual and historical documents on display there. But one that really made an impression on me was a map. It was an old mariner's chart, drawn in 1525, outlining the North American coastline and adjacent waters. At that time most of the new continent's interior had not as yet been explored with but a few hundred miles of coastline being the only evidence of what lie beyond.

The handful of explorers who had visited the Americas had relied upon the scattered Indian tribes for information about the land. In many cases, since the natives had no wish that these strange visitors from the sea should venture forth over their land, so they had created fanciful tales and legends as being an accurate description of what the new land held in store for anyone adventurous or foolhardy enough to take the risk.

With these tales in mind, the cartographer made some intriguing notations on areas of the map that represented regions not yet explored. He wrote: "Here be giants," "Here be fiery scorpions," and "Here be dragons." Eventually, the map came into the possession of Sir John Franklin, a British explorer in the early 1800's. Looking over these fanciful, even mythical inscriptions, he scratched them out one by one and in their stead he wrote these words across the map: "Here be God."

What lies in store for us along the "coastlines" of our lives is known only to God. But, He has not been so unkind as to give us no hope for tomorrow. He has mapped out a course which He desires that we should follow. Perhaps that is what Paul had in mind when he wrote: This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, we shall also live with Him." (II Tim. 2:11). Simply put, if we live by faith today, enduring all things, the promise of tomorrow is bright... no dragons, no scorpions and no giants!

For His Cause,
Tim Woodward