A Valiant Captain's Effort

 •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 7
The "Patrick Morris" was a large ferry boat which carried passengers and cars across the strait between Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. The captain was justly proud of his boat which had made the trip safely many times.
One day while the ferry was in the harbor at Port aux Basques, a violent storm came up. The waves in the strait rolled high as the wind blew harder and harder. Rather than risk damage from the raging storm in the strait, the captain of the "Patrick Morris" kept his ferry in the quieter waters of the harbor, waiting for the gale to die down.
Suddenly, over the tumultuous waves came the cry of distress, a "Mayday," from a boat in trouble out in the strait. The ferry boat captain was keenly aware of the urgency of the call and felt impelled to disregard the raging storm and speed to the aid of fellow-seamen. He gave orders for the ferry to move out into the strait, and soon the big vessel was churning its way out of the harbor and into the storm.
After plowing through the tossing waves for some time the labors of the crew were rewarded. A small fishing boat came into view foundering before the wind. The situation presented dangerous problems for both vessels, for the mighty powers of the sea could easily have dashed the small craft against the big ferry, crushing the little boat and perhaps badly damaging the large one. What should he do? The captain pondered the question, and decided to take the risk.
He ordered the big ferry to be maneuvered as close as possible to the helpless small craft, and very soon the "Patrick Morris" was in position, its huge loading and unloading door away from the wind and near the sinking boat.
"Open the door," the captain commanded. The electrical equipment whirred as the crew hastened to obey. The great door slowly slid upward and opened. In this position they hoped they could more easily rescue the men on the little fishing boat. As the door reached maximum height, the electric current shut off, leaving the yawning mouth locked wide open.
At that moment the wind veered and a wall of water crashed into the huge open door of the ferry boat. The electrical power generator, flooded by the in-pouring water, was knocked out and the crew could not close the door again.
How helpless they were as wave after wave washed up into the ferry! Soon it was evident that the big ship itself was sinking. The lifeboats were launched and about 28 men got safely to shore. Several fishermen were lost; and the captain, the first mate, and the chief engineer went down with the ship.
The captain had tried to save the men in the fishing boat. He made a valiant effort, but he failed. HE WAS NOT ABLE.
Only one—the Lord Jesus—"IS ABLE TO SAVE TO THE UTTERMOST." The way is open to "THEM THAT COME UNTO GOD BY HIM." Will you come? Adapted from "Messages of the Love of God"