Rudderless and Adrift

2013 (8-23-2013) Dan and the canon in the Mountains

My husband, Dan, is currently writing a series for his new book entitled, “SEASONS IN TIME” – Dramas of how people encounter God face to face in the seasons of their lives. Below is one of the postings that will be included in his book. If you know anyone who might be ministered to through Dan’s writing, please feel free to forward it to them.



Thirty-two years old and divorced…again!  But it wasn’t my fault! Both husbands turned out to be first class jerks! I don’t know why, but I always end up falling for broken-wing birds. Maybe I don’t think I’m not good enough for levelheaded and emotionally mature men. Or maybe I have a “savior” complex trying to rescue floundering people. But now I’ve found a man that I know will treat me right. He’s loving and compassionate…just like me. He has dreams and hopes for the future…just like me. The only problem is that he’s in prison! I met him through a pen-pal program in my city. But that doesn’t matter. I love him and we’re getting married next month…even before he gets paroled! Once he’s out, he’ll live with me and I’ll help him get on his feet again. This will be it…my search for the perfect husband is finally over!

I’m thirty-five years old and I still don’t have a career…or a lasting relationship. Sure, I’m a college graduate, but that’s only because dad said that a young man has to have a degree to make it in the world. I despised interviewing with companies and the internship I signed up for was boring. All the young women I dated were either sold out to Corporate America or wanted to get married because their biological clocks were ticking. So, I decided to take a year off and just hike across the country to clear my head. That’s when I met a fascinating guy and his girl who were drifters like me. They had a great plan. Rob a few banks, catch a freighter to the Islands and become beachcombers. Now…that’s what I really call living!


2015 (8-9-2015) Ship - 1“A small rudder on a huge ship in the hands of a skilled captain sets a course in the face of the strongest winds.” – James 3:4 (Message Bible). Thomas Carlyle, Scottish philosopher and satirical writer, wrote, “The man without a purpose is like a ship without a rudder.” Without an operative rudder, the fate of a great ship hopelessly drifts with the shifting currents and blowing winds. Many a mighty sailing vessel has run aground or ended up dashed to destruction on the rocks for the lack of a skilled helmsman with a true compass. If you ever find yourself rudderless and adrift, your only hope is for the “Captain” of your soul to take over the helm of your life (1 Peter 2:25).  Read what happened to these two young adults when they personally met The True Compass and Helmsman.

“Rudderless and adrift…that’s what you are!” Those were my mother’s stinging words when she learned that my recently-paroled husband ran off with another woman. “If you think men with baggage are fascinating, romantic and exciting, you’re in deeper trouble than they are!” Her words cut deep in my heart. That’s when I decided to attend a counseling program sponsored by a local church. I’ll never forget the words of one of the pastors. “You may not understand this, but you have a gift of compassion and mercy from the Lord. But you lack three things: Discernment, Wisdom and the Savior!” I don’t know all that happened, but I sensed the presence of God immersing me in billows of love. For the first time ever, I felt that instead of trying to rescue others, I had been rescued. That was the day I found my Savior, my Rudder and myself!

2015 (8-9-2015) ship -3“Son, you’ve got a faulty compass!” Those were dad’s words that kept haunting me as my new-found friends and I made our way to pull our first bank job. We spent the night in a campground just outside the town. As night began to fall, I heard music in the distance…an old familiar sound that I had dismissed years ago. It was coming from a tent just over the ridge. As I listened, I remembered the song…“Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” My heart repeated the stanza, “Prone to wander—Lord, I feel it—prone to leave the God I love.” It was 10 years ago that I made my way to that old-fashioned tent revival. I’ll never forget the amazing grace of the Lord that cured my faulty compass that night. I returned home and entered seminary. From that day until now, I’m helping confused young people find True North…just as I did a decade ago.

Sheila Rhodes

About Sheila Rhodes

The greatest destiny and purpose for me is serving God with ALL my heart, soul and being! My personal relationship with the Lord brings such LIFE as He speaks to me, opens doors of ministry opportunities, and gives me insight into the hearts of others who need a word of encouragement spoken just at the right time.
This entry was posted in Sheila's Heart. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *