Horse Latitudes

Sometimes I find myself sailing along and then there’s no wind. It’s nice when you feel the spray of the ocean and feel the sails pulling you through the waves, but sitting in a dead calm is not so much fun.

Back in the days of sailing they had an area of the Atlantic known as the “doldrums” or the “horse latitudes”. This area was known for it’s sudden lack of wind which could leave ships stranded for days or weeks at a time. If you’ve got an alternate source of power this is no problem, but if wind and sail are your only choice for crossing the ocean you are in a bit of a pickle. I suppose it’s a bit like driving through an area with no cell service nowadays!

Sailors could succumb to mental breakdowns, mutiny, and all manner of problematic behavior as boredom, thirst, and hunger set in. Often horses were thrown overboard in an effort to lessen the weight of their ships, hence the name horse latitudes.

In my life such situations used to enter my daily routines. I would find myself adrift in a “sea of troubles” with not form of locomotion to pull me through. Then all of a sudden I stubbed my toe on good ol’ Step 3 – “We made a decision to turn our lives and our wills over to the care of God.” BOOM! Jesus Christ, my Higher Power, is one whale of an engine folks!

By not trying to do things on my own; by not throwing my horses overboard; by “letting go and letting God” I am able to move through the doldrums of my journey.

Now here’s the thing – when I set out on the journey, I knew it would be present problems to be solved. There’s not as much to a problem if you come prepared with solutions. Jesus is my solution! When my wind slows down to a gentle breeze I do my best to allow Jesus to take over and get me through. Now don’t misunderstand what I am saying here. This is not a mighty claim that I never lose momentum or drift off course, because that can happen at any time. I have just grown to understand that when I do go astray on the vast sea I am still able to correct my situation with the help of my Higher Power.

Land ho! and Rise up!

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