Wednesday, July 18, 2007

momentary pause for clarity

clarity... a state of being clear. a silent lucidity. a presumed capacity to perceive the truth directly and instantaneously. peace. stillness after the whirlwind. a search for hope after a door creaks closed... or is that just my perception? maybe God is teaching me a lesson about seeing His faithfulness, even through the cracks of a door not yet sealed. hope is always present in the light. and the light seeps through...

in the late 1930's, pre-World War II, a Navy submarine was doing dive testing off the New England coast. War was inevitable and the U.S. was already in the midst of secret underwater U--boat attacks. Failure of the main induction valve caused the flooding of the after torpedo room in the Squalus, both engine rooms, and the crew's quarters, drowning 26 men immediately. Quick action by the crew prevented the other compartments from flooding. Squalus bottomed in 40 fathoms (73 m) of water. Here's the rest of the story:

The Squalus was stuck on the bottom of the harbor off the New Hampshire coast. It seemed that all was lost. There was no electricity and the oxygen was quickly running out. In one last attempt to rescue the sailors from the steel coffin, the U.S. Navy sent a ship equipped with Navy divers to the spot on the surface, directly above the wounded submarine. Squalus was initially located by her sister ship, Sculpin (SS-191). The two submarines were able to communicate using a telephone marker buoy until the cable parted. Divers from the rescue ship Falcon, under the direction of the salvage and rescue expert Lieutenant Commander Charles B. "Swede" Momsen, located the submarine. A Navy diver went over the side of the ship to the dangerous depths in one last rescue attempt. The trapped sailors heard the metal boots of the diver land on the exterior surface, and they moved to where they thought the rescuer would be. In the darkness they tapped in Morse code, "Is there any hope?" The diver on the outside, recognizing the message, signaled by tapping on the exterior of the sub, "Yes, there is hope." He then proceeded to respond, tapping out these letters in Morse code. "J-E-S-U-S C-H-R-I-S-T"

Hope creeps in and rears its head at just the right moment... for those who believe and trust and obey. And hope does not disappoint us... because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. [Romans 5:5]

The waters are stilled. If they are stirred it will be His doing, not mine... and I shall respond. Clarity gives me hope. One way or the other - i will be diligent. I hope for a clear answer. I trust it will come.

what a process this has been.

*Divers were later able to rescue all 33 surviving crew members from the disabled submarine. Four enlisted divers earned the Medal of Honor for their work during the rescue and subsequent salvage.*

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