Celebrating Holy Week – Prayers and Little Miracles

Little miracles. In observance of the Holy Week, Seaman Memories will be posting about stories with significant impact in life especially on board. Thru first hand experiences, the writer wishes to grab a few minutes of your attention to impart lessons, realizations and events- some of which I call little miracles, that connects our beliefs together thru a story of prayer.

One particular event that always amuse me is during those times that I started out sailing. God showed His little miracles to me. There is this one man who was very irritable. He would throw at you the worst and foulest words every day if he feels like it. He curses and raises his voice especially to his fellow ratings. But thru prayers, I began to understand something behind those acts, I still see some goodness in him. He was kind, a family man. Because of the stress and the very short voyages that we have, he became very irate even to small, insignificant matters.

Now, it was my time to watch with him on deck. We were having a six-to-six system during port stay and we will always be very busy- one of the downside of being a small tanker. My other crewmates warned me about him. But even before that, I already saw and felt his attitude. When it comes to anger, his was intense. Curses would gush out in his mouth like a broken fire hydrant when provoked.

I had no choice but to work with him on the manifold for six long hours. His rank was higher than me so it would be easy for him to get angry over small things and give me those dirty words. But I expected blessings. I hoped for little miracles from God.

Every time before I leave my bed, I always pray to God. I ask Him for protection, guidance, understanding, wisdom and harmony. More importantly, I asked a peaceful watch with my crewmate during those six long hours. I prayed that my friend would find no cause for anger. But more importantly, I asked for self-control. Because of his attitude, I might retaliate and worse things might happen.

True enough, His providence came. He became friendly during our watch. We talked a lot of things and I get to know him more on a deeper level. I learned why he was irritable and badmouthed without me asking it from him. He opened it up to me and I slowly understood him. Then I realized, God gave me wisdom and understanding. His little miracles are slowly unfolding.

On other occasions, he became angry at me. His tantrums were all over the place and so are his words. But I remained calm. I held my peace and slowly walked away with a prayer using an alibi of going forward for a mooring and safety checks. I was not mad at him but I knew that God answered my prayers again. He gave me self-control.

Soon, I slowly got to know him better and better. I discovered how he liked food and loved his daughter so much. Whenever we talked about her, he became happy. He would share about their latest video calls. He would tell me that her daughter got an A grade in school and how happy he was. Then he would ask me the best delicacies in our town and shared some of his too. Again, God heard me. His little miracles are slowly gaining momentum. We were in harmony. And He guided me to it.

During my six-month contract, everything went safe and sound. Though we had problems of all sorts, we remain safe all the time. We were always happy and we learn how to deal with his attitude. But for me, I was blessed to met a guy like him. I learned a lot of things on deck from maintenance jobs, mooring operation, stripping, lining up the cargo lines, tank cleaning, emergencies, etc. When it comes to work, his caliber was very high and his standards too. He was also kind in many ways and mindful of the other crews especially on safety matters.

These were my little miracles from above that happened before. I know that my prayers are heard because God’s works are neatly done around me. Prayers are powerful. I always pray and thank Him for another miracle before I sleep.

What’s your little miracle?

May the winds be on your favor.

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