“The name of the LORD is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”-Proverbs 18:10
Pictured above is the American Shoal Lighthouse. Completed in 1880, it was the last of 9 lighthouses built along the Florida Keys. It measures 109 feet and its structure is made entirely of wrought iron. This lighthouse is still in operation and serves as a guide to mariners warning them of the dangerous reefs that have wrecked numerous ships over the centuries.
Something interesting can be said of every single lighthouse in the world even if they never made the headlines or became the subject of a literary work like the one mentioned in my devotion, “Like Little Red.” Since the sole purpose of building lighthouses was to save lives, they all have their own story of how they did just that by either guiding ships to safety or providing shipwreck victims with temporary shelter.
And that is exactly what the American Shoal Lighthouse did back on May 20, 2016 when a group of Cuban migrants climbed the 136-year-old structure after being intercepted by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Details of their attempt to illegally enter the U.S. included federal persecution and the chance for them to be either deported back to Cuba or granted asylum. Their fate rested on what is known as the “wet–foot,dry–foot” policy, which gives anyone who leaves Cuba and enters the U.S. the opportunity to obtain residency and expedite their citizenship. But after an intense 6-week legal battle a federal judge ruled that they had not set foot on actual U.S. soil and therefore had to return to their homeland. You can read more about it here.
Upon hearing about the court’s decision I couldn’t help but think of how those poor souls must have felt the moment they first set foot on that tower. Thinking that they had finally “landed” on U.S. territory, their fears most likely turned to hope and relief. But that feeling of hope would soon be replaced with utmost disappointment. After learning that the lighthouse was not considered part of the U.S. mainland they had to face the reality of their repatriation.
Those who navigate to Christ are granted immediate and eternal citizenship in God’s Kingdom.
Lighthouses have been nicknamed “saviours of the sea” and rightfully so. Not only because they have guided ships away from impending danger, but because lighthouse keepers have risked their very lives to rescue shipwrecked mariners and grant them temporary refuge in their quarters. However, those who have placed their faith and trust in Jesus know that He is not only the Savior of the sea but of the whole world! He is the lighthouse that guides men with the true light of hope and provides not temporary, but eternal refuge to all who are shipwrecked in the turbulent sea of life. Those who navigate to Christ are granted immediate and eternal citizenship in God’s Kingdom. They automatically enjoy the full benefits of salvation, which include: forgiveness of sin, peace of mind, rest for the soul, healing for the body, unconditional love, and complete access to God’s throne of grace. This, of course, is far more rewarding than what any refugee or citizen could ever receive in any given country during their entire lifetime.
Have you navigated towards Jesus, the Lighthouse of salvation? If you have, remember that by taking that step of faith He has now made YOU a lighthouse so that you, in turn, can shine His light and lead others to Him. However, if you haven’t then you are still living under the jurisdiction of the ruler of this world, namely Satan, and in order to escape from his power and oppression, you must accept and submit to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. When and if you do this, you actually become a refugee of this world (corrupt systems and ideologies), but you also gain asylum in the kingdom of Almighty God and are granted citizen status forever!
If you know Jesus as Lord and Savior then keep shining for his glory. If you don’t, and you would like to know how you can become a lighthouse for God by receiving the light of His salvation then follow this link.
Prayer: Lord, when I was lost you guided me. You took me in and saved me from the powers of darkness. Thank you for being my tower of refuge. And thank you for all the benefits I now enjoy as your child and as an heir to your heavenly kingdom. In You, I have found true freedom and purpose for my life. Help me to shine your light and lead others to your saving arms. In Jesus name I pray, amen.