Letters to Tom — Sailing

Dear Tom:

I have to begin with a true story and a little background. For whatever reason I sat down today for my meditation and one of my favorite quotes came the mind. As many people know, while I was on sabbatical I collected quotes and very short stories. One of the earliest and one of my favorites was a passage from Woodrow Wilson about sailing. I believe it starts — “what is liberty?” Wilson goes on to talk about the sailing phrase “in irons” and “obeying the great breath out of heavens.”

Now I am not a sailor, although I’ve had the honor of sailing on occasion with Captain Max and able seaman Ketcher and have some sense and understanding of the thrill of “skimming the water with light foot”, and “how free she runs.” But, my understanding is limited. My father did not sail as a man, but I remember how he would talk with a special look in his eye about being a boy and sailing in New England.

So why do I write. This morning, I started my meditation this morning thinking about sailing, and sure enough in both books I read, the day’s passage was about sailing. One author talks about being in “irons” and its theological equivalent of being enslaved by sin. How it is important to do as we do in sailing to simply “turn away.” How no matter how smooth the sailing, we know it is temporary, and it will need “adjustment.” Finally, to not focus on the future need for adjustment but to enjoy the sail like we need to remember to savor the blessings of life.

From Wilson to my morning authors, I pause to consider to voyage I am on. I have been “in irons” and also known what it’s like to catch the wind and “glide” smoothly across the waters of life. Most importantly I’ve learned to put my boat in the water. I’ve learned to move in harmony and fearlessly wherever the tides, the currents, and the winds of life take me.

Your Friend, Webb

P.S. My webmaster has “begged” me to remind everyone that the site does cost a small amount of money to maintain. We do not allow advertisements or have “annual” fund drives or telethons. He asks that once a year, I remind the readers that the site does accept donations to maintain its operation. I apologize for even posting this but for my promise to do this, he discounts his service to me. Please feel free to ignore. W.

About the author

Webb Hubbell, former Associate Attorney General of The United States, is an author and speaker. His novels, When Men Betray, Ginger Snaps, A Game of Inches, The Eighteenth Green, and The East End are published by Beaufort Books and are available online or at your local bookstore. When Men Betray won one of the IndieFab awards for best novel in 2014. Ginger Snaps and The Eighteenth Green won the IPPY Awards Gold Medal for best suspense/thriller.

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