The Captain And The Quadrant.
A godly man, the master of an American ship, during one voyage found his
ship bemisted for days, and he became rather anxious respecting her
safety. He went down to his cabin and prayed. The thought struck him, if
he had with confidence committed his soul to God, he might certainly
commit his ship to Him; and so, accordingly, he gave all into the hands
of God, and felt at perfect peace; but still he prayed, that if He would
be pleased to give a cloudless sky at twelve o'clock, he should like to
take an observation to ascertain their real position, and whether they
were on the right course.
He came on deck at eleven o'clock, with the quadrant under his coat. As
it was thick drizzling, the men looked at him with amazement. He went to
his cabin, prayed, and came up. There seemed still to be no hope. Again
he went down and prayed, and again he appeared on deck with his quadrant
in his hand. It was now ten minutes to twelve o'clock, and still there
was no appearance of a change; but he stood on the deck, waiting upon
the Lord, when, in a few minutes, the mist seemed to be folded up and
rolled away as by an omnipotent and invisible hand; the sun shown
clearly from the blue vault of heaven, and there stood the man of prayer
with the quadrant in his hand, but so awe-struck did he feel, and so
"dreadful" was that place, that he could scarcely take advantage of the
answer to his prayer. He, however, succeeded, although with trembling
hands, and found, to his comfort, that all was well. But no sooner had
he finished taking the observation than the mist rolled back over the
heavens, and it began to drizzle as before.
This story of prayer was received from the lips of the good Captain
Crossby, who was so useful in the Ardrossan awakening; and he himself
was the man who prayed and waited upon his God with the quadrant in his
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