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"From there we put out to sea again and passed to the lee of Cyprus because the winds were against us." NIV translation
So they wanted to head straight to Rome but the winds were against them and so they passed southeast of Cyprus following the coast of Asia Minor. Sometimes, we find ourselves in circumstances where it seems that things (the wind) is against us and we wonder why it is happening if we are in the will of God. Paul was right smack in the will of God and yet it did not seem like smooth easy sailing for them. We can take heart in that and remember that Jesus said that it was going to be difficult to follow Him especially in the last days.
"When we had sailed across the open sea off the coast of Cilicia and Pamphylia, we landed at Myra in Lycia." NIV translation
Myra in Lycia is in the southern part of what is now Turkey. Although it is not there today, it was a thriving port city at this time. Near the city was a fertile plain and grain was sent from there to Rome.
"There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship sailing for Italy and put us on board." NIV translation
In this thriving port city, the centurion was able to find a ship headed for Italy. It was a ship from Egypt as there were many ships from Egypt that stopped there on their way to Italy with grain.
"We made slow headway for many days and had difficulty arriving off Cnidus. When the wind did not allow us to hold our course, we sailed to the lee of Crete, opposite of Salmone. We moved along the coast with difficulty and came to a place called Fair Havens, near the town of Lasea." NIV translation
Once again, the winds did not allow the ship to take the course that they wanted. They ended up landing in a port located on Crete which was a good place to wait out the weather. Even today, this port is used as a shipping and storage depot. Many point to these struggles with the winds and say that God was intervening to try to stop Paul from going to Rome but that is not so. As we shall see, these winds had brought them to a safe spot where they could rest and wait on God. It is a reminder to us that we can trust God in all things even with winds that seem to be against us.