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From: "REVIVAL List" <prophetic@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2007 15:20:34 -0700
NOTE:  A parable with a wonderful message about why God uses
those who have been "tried in the furnace", etc. -Take a read...

-by Jeff Joslyn.

A wise Captain and owner of a fleet of ocean going vessels went 
down to the docks to see a man who sold cargo ships: large 
multimast boats capable of commercial transport. The owner of 
the marina explained that he only had two available. "One," he 
said,"just came from the builders -the other, just in from the storm." 
The captain knew what storm the man was talking about, having 
lost ships that he was now trying to replace. 

He went on, "The worst storm of the century some are sayin'! 
That's where this one here that's all tore up just came in from. She 
just limped in out of that storm like a beat dog." He pointed,"You 
can see, two of 'er masts are cracked near the base. I'm surprised 
they didn't break clean off like the main mast did. She's banged 
up all over as well. Need lots of repairs and a good scrub and 
polish, a 'course, 'fore she's fit to sail again!" 

And then excitedly he turned the master sailor to show him the 
brand new ship: a grand and tall sailing vessel. The Captain had to 
squint his eyes to shield them from the brightness reflected off the 
polished chrome and brass and bronze that adorned the 
magnificent new vessel. "Now this here's a beauty. She's a bit
pricey, mind you, but worth every penny. State of the art! and 
brand spankin' new! She's never been outside of this here jetty. 
We just put her in the water the other day." 

"Aye, she's a beauty that she is!" the wizened sea veteran agreed 
but as he did he turned to the beat up and broken vessel that lay 
sorrowful and bruised in the water and propositioned the seller, 
"How much will ya take for that one?" 

Shocked, the harbor master looked to the man pleadingly saying, 
"If its money that's the problem..." but the Captain cut him short, 
"No! No! You know I run a large fleet and money is not the issue 
here!" And the seller looked on still incredulous, for he himself 
was very impressed with his new ship and had seen how the 
Captain had admired it as well. But the fleet owner went on to explain:

"In that devil of a storm, I lost some ships and many men as well. 
And if I can help it that's not gonna happen again. You see, where 
many other ships failed in that great tempest - this one came 
through. A bit worse for the wear, 'tis obvious, but she made it; 
and her men and all the cargo survived. 

"And now we know something about this here ship. She's been 
tested, tried in the fire as it were, and she's survived. That's more 
than you can say for alot of others which didn't make it. And who 
can say with this new one here?... 

"A fine looking ship she is, I'll grant you, but who would you trust 
the lives of your crew to - this one here which has never been to 
sea and may or may not be seaworthy or survive in great waters? 
Or this one who's taken the worst this ole sea can throw at her 
and survived intact to sail another day? We know she can take 
the rough stuff!" 

And so the sale was made and the Captain had a new ship. The 
harbor master was disappointed that he didn't sell the more 
expensive one, but still he had to admire the wisdom of the 
Master's choice. 

So, ready to restore the broken vessel and add it to his fleet, the 
Captain took his leave. As he departed he turned and said, "And 
don't worry, that other is a fine looking ship and most people are 
overly impressed by outward appearance. You should have no 
trouble selling her. And who knows maybe she'll prove to be a
good bet after all." So with a tip of the hat and a grin the wise 
Captain climbed to shore and sauntered off confident in the vessel 
he had chosen while the harbor master stood watching him leave, 
scratching his head. 

Like the wise Captain, God is choosing in this hour based not on 
appearance but on survivability. 

Jesus said "I have prayed for you that your faith fail not." 

"Unless the Lord Almighty had left us some survivors, we would 
have become like Sodom, we would have been like Gomorrah." -Is 1.9 

Many have come through violent storms. They have survived 
somehow, where others have failed. The God who 'sees not as 
man sees' is getting ready to do some fixin' up and polishin' as he 
chooses those, beat up and broken, whose faith has endured. 

"My brethren, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial that 
has come to try you...." - The Apostle Peter
~SOURCE:  http://ftp.connectionmagazine.org/2003_06/ts_tall_ships.htm