It happened on the evening of April 14, 1912. The Titanic, the largest ship afloat, struck an iceberg in the treacherous waters of the Atlantic. Four hours later she sank to the bottom.
A place on one lifeboat was reserved for a certain woman. She was just stepping into the boat when she asked if she could run to the ship’s library to get something. She was allowed three minutes.
The woman ran through the corridors of the reeling vessel. Crossing the saloon she caught sight of jewelry strewn around the floor. Passengers had hurriedly cleaned out their safes and dropped valuables as they ran. What an opportunity! Wealth was literally at her fingertips!
But she ignored the jewelry, made her way to the library, snatched a copy of the Bible and ran back to the waiting lifeboat.
Earlier that day it may have seemed incredible to the woman to choose a copy of the Bible over valuable jewelry. But in the face of death, prized valuables became relatively worthless, and what may have seemed worthless became suddenly valuable.
Unfortunately, it often takes a catastrophe to shuffle our priorities into a sensible order. But what a catastrophe when we never do discover what is truly valuable.
Steve Goodier [email protected]