The Perfect Storm by James Merritt

THE PERFECT STORM
DR. JAMES MERRITT
MARK 4:35-41
11-5-00

INTRODUCTION

1. OCTOBER 1991, THE ANDREA GAIL, A SEVENTY-TWO FOOT
LONG FISHING BOAT, WITH A 365 HORSEPOWER TURBO-CHARGED
DIESEL ENGINE, LEAVES A NEW ENGLAND PORT HEADED FOR
THE ATLANTIC OCEAN. IT IS GOING ON WHAT WAS SUPPOSED
TO BE ANOTHER ROUTINE FISHING TRIP. BUT IT WAS TO BE
HER LAST VOYAGE.

2. WHY? BECAUSE SHE RAN INTO THE MOST POWERFUL AND
DANGEROUS FORCE ON EARTH—A FULL-BLOWN HURRICANE ON THE
OPEN SEAS. AN OCEAN HURRICANE IS SO POWERFUL THAT THE
COMBINED NUCLEAR ARSENALS OF THE UNITED STATES AND THE
FORMER SOVIET UNION, DO NOT CONTAIN ENOUGH ENERGY TO
KEEP THAT HURRICANE GOING FOR ONE DAY. ONE AVERAGE
HURRICANE ENCOMPASSES A MILLION CUBIC MILES OF
ATMOSPHERE, AND COULD PROVIDE ALL OF THE ELECTRICAL
POWER NEEDED BY THE UNITED STATES FOR UP TO FOUR
YEARS.

3. WINDS CAN BE SO HIGH THAT WHEN THEY HIT THE COAST,
PEOPLE HAVE BEEN SANDBLASTED TO DEATH. SO MUCH RAIN
CAN FALL— UP TO 5 INCHES PER HOUR—BIRDS HAVE BEEN
KNOWN TO DROWN IN MID FLIGHT AS THE WATER CLOGS THEIR
UPWARD-FACING NOSTRILS.

4. THE ANDREA GAIL HAD THE MISFORTUNE OF RUNNING INTO
OF ALL THINGS A STORM CALLED "HURRICANE GRACE." IT
WAS A STORM SO POWERFUL THAT IT HAD THE HIGHEST
SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHTS EVER MEASURED OR CALCULATED
FROM 1899 TO 1991. IN FACT, THIS STORM HAS BEEN GIVEN
THE NICKNAME "THE PERFECT STORM." THIS STORM BROUGHT
WAVES TEN STORIES HIGH WITH PRESSURE OF UP TO SIX TONS
PER SQUARE FOOT OF WATER. THE WINDS WERE MEASURED AT
120 MILES AN HOUR. THE ANDREA GAIL NEVER HAD A CHANCE
BECAUSE SHE HAD ENCOUNTERED THE "PERFECT STORM."

5. WELL 2,000 YEARS AGO THERE OCCURRED IN THE SEA OF
GALILEE THE FIRST "PERFECT STORM." IT WAS PERFECT FOR
THIS REASON: NOT BECAUSE IT WAS AS VIOLENT, BUT IT
WAS FAR MORE IMPORTANT. BECAUSE THIS STORM TAUGHT
TWELVE DISCIPLES THEN, AND HOPEFULLY WILL TEACH YOU
TODAY, HOW TO NAVIGATE THE SHIP OF YOUR LIF ...


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