Voyage through the Bible.
Israel to Malta
1405 Nautical Miles.
We read the Book of Acts and wondered about all the places that Paul visited, the sea's he crossed, the islands he visited, the cities he spoke in in? We wanted to walk where he walked, stand where he stood and learned about the cultures and history of that time? Our Bible experience was transformed through actually being there?
We learned how to sail it and then it was all hands to the helm and to the sails..
Sailing, watch keeping, cooking, cleaning, learning, fellowshipping, worshipping, loving, forgiving, encouraging, laughing, growing.
It was all about Discipleship, Fellowship, Seamanship, Apprenticeship, Craftsmanship, Leadership, Hardship, Friendship and all the other ships in the English language.
After two weeks of living, learning, experiencing Cyprus and Israel we boarded the Next Wave in Herzliya Marine.
After a period of introduction, safety awareness and sail training we then started the first leg of your voyage sailing to Papahos Cyprus.
It took us 36 hours (day and night sail).
Beautiful stars, possible dolphins, great sunsets.
Everyone takes part in the day and night watches as well as the normal chores of cooking, cleaning, trimming the sails and having great fellowship together.
From Cyprus we continued our Journey following Paul’s footsteps on to Antalya and then Alanya also.
Here there was an opportunity to meet up with the local church, hear their life stories, assist in the work they are doing and also share your faith with friends and visitors you meet along the way.
From Antalya the Voyage continued to:-
And then stopping for a while in Athens.
At every anchorage and harbour there were time's ashore to experience the culture and life of the local people. To learn about the historical events that took place as Paul stayed in each of these towns.
Different speakers visited the boat and gave inspiring talks and insight to the Bible and faith.
During the Voyage everyone took part in the normal maintenance of the Next Wave. These included.
Team Deck Scrubbing.
Sanding and painting.
Repairing the rigging.
Maintaining the machinery
Updating the charts.
And much more.
While in Athens we stad in a small very picturesque fishing harbour called Pachi.
From Pachi we took coach tours to visit Athens, Mount Olympus and Corinth.
These were all be led by an inspiring and knowledge local guide who opened our mind and heart to the life and atmosphere which Paul experienced as he gave his challenging “To the unknown God” speech.
From Athens the Voyage continued along the Corinth Canal. An Amazing feet of engineering.
The canal consists of a single channel 8 metres (26 ft) deep, excavated at sea level (thus requiring no locks), measuring 6,346 metres (20,820 ft) long by 24.6 metres (81 ft) wide at the top and 21.3 metres (70 ft) wide at the bottom. The rock walls, which rise 90 metres (300 ft) above sea level, are at a near-vertical 80° angle.
The canal transit takes about 45 mins at 5 knots but is by no means easy to steer through at that speed. Altogether a very special experience.
On the sail through the gulf of Patras a short stop was made at the lovely little harbour of Galaxia. From here we took a local bus ride up to the magnificent site of Delphi. At one time Delphi was the pagan spiritual and cultural heart of the the Grecian empire. It hosted the for runner to the Olympic Games and also had an abundance of musical and cultural events.
It is nestled high up in the hills and crags above the Gulf of Patras the views and scenery are stunning.
The attached museum gives a good perspective on life and culture in the 3 -5 century BC.
From Galaxia we sailed to Ithaca, Levkas, Paxos and Rhodes the green and lush Ionian Islands full of ancient mythology and cultural heritage.
We said good by to the beautiful Greek Islands and continued our sail all the way down the Ionian sea across to Sicily where the boat stopsed for a few days in Syracuse before ending the voyage on the lovely Island of Malta.
The final week was spent in the marina on Gozo where the voyage debrief took place as well as excursion, lectures and fond farewells were said after an epic voyage.
Here is a little Taster.
During the summer of 2014 I was privileged to take part in a YWAM Discipleship Bible School on the sailing yacht Next Wave . During this time we traveled to six different countries following the apostle Paul's life long journey. We read through the entire bible on location in Cyprus, Israel, Turkey, Greece, Italy, and Malta while engaging in ministry in every location.
The experience that followed was incredible and truly life changing. To this day the entire experience feels like a crazy incredible dream. You might think living on a sailboat is just a vacation but there was so much more behind the scenes. During this time I was having open heart surgery, breaking chains the devil has been binding me with for years. All this while, God romanced me with his love and beauty; breathtaking sunrises, crystal blue waters, adventures in nature, and exploring parts on the world I never dreamed of seeing.
The Next Wave is amazing but the true joy of this experience was the people. Every single person on the Next wave shined with the love of Christ, creating a community that is uplifting, welcoming, and a loving family. While my time on the Next Wave is finished, the impact it has had on my life is eternal. The Next Wave is an incredible ministry, and a great school. I would recommend it to anyone wanting to grow with God, spread the good news, or go on a incredible life changing adventure.
Luke Chamberlain. USA