22 May 2012

I had just dropped off to sleep when I felt the ship bump as if scraping the side of a tree.

I sat up straight in bed, trying to make out what had happened. It seemed completely silent for a minute or two. The engines were cut off. The corridors were quiet until one began to hear doors open and voices speaking. The first voice I heard was a woman asking the steward what had happened. He replied calmly, “Everything will be all right.”

Sinking of the Titanic

Those were the words of Miss Helen R. Østby, survivor, recalling the night when the Titanic had struck an iceberg which would lead to the ship’s sinking and the death of 1,500+ passengers and crew.

I can only imagine what it would have been like – just over one hundred years ago – to be on the grand, arrogantly acclaimed “unsinkable” Titanic.

The anticipation leading up to her maiden voyage, the excitement of all those boarding such an extravagant vessel, the luxury and grandeur of her various decks and the first class dining hall.

With this being the 100th year anniversary of Titanic’s sinking, we have been studying her passengers, the events surrounding her maiden and fatal voyage, and those who survived. The event becomes more and more real with each new fact learned and each new story read.

I am left speechless by the heroism of the men who gave their lives so that women and children could live. Not a single act of chivalry, heroism, or sacrifice was performed by accident. With great intention the men placed the women and children on lifeboats as the Titanic took on water.

The sinking was tragic because of the many lives lost at sea. But with gratefulness we can look back and give thanks for those who were spared and lived to tell the stories of manhood, womanhood, humility, servanthood, and especially sacrifice.

“For I know that the Lord is great,
and that our Lord is above all gods.
Whatever the Lord pleases, He does,
in heaven and on earth,
in the seas and all deeps.
He it is who makes the clouds rise at the end of the earth,
Who makes lightnings for the rain
and brings forth the wind from His storehouses.”

—Psalm 135:5-7

  1. One Response to “Not by Accident”

  2. Carla on May 29, 2012 said:

    Lovely photo of the book.

    This is one of the few tributes I’ve seen about the heroism and sacrifice of those who stayed on the ship – and it’s beautifully put.

    When we were at the British Library, we listened to an old recording made of a survivor’s story. Very memorable.

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