Follow Us On:

Wonders of the Deep

Posted on Wednesday, March 6, 2024 at 8:00 am

Musings and Memories

By Doug Dezotell

It’s been several years back, and I remember standing in awe on the balcony of my stateroom gazing out upon the vast expanse of the royal blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

It was truly an amazing spiritual experience for me as I looked out upon the ocean before me, realizing the Creator of it all was there with me.

The night before, I had been reading these words from Psalm 95: “O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods. In his hand are the deep places of the earth: the strength of the hills is his also. The sea is his, and he made it: and his hands formed the dry land. O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.”

I’ve had the privilege of standing on the shores of both the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean numerous times before, looking out at the waters from land, but Lynn and I shared this awesome experience together as we went with dear friends on a Caribbean cruise.

Land was nowhere in sight that morning, and that was a new experience for me; and I sure felt the presence of God in that moment.

It was a great way to begin what was to become a wonderful and memorable vacation.

There had been so much going on in our lives and Lynn and I needed a time of refreshing.

We took time with our best friends and set out on a seven day adventure aboard a cruise ship. We had never done anything like this before, so we didn’t know what to expect. But, it was a great experience.

We sailed from New Orleans on Saturday afternoon, and the ship made its way down the Mississippi River and out to the Gulf of Mexico.

We spent our first two days cruising in the Gulf, headed for the Caribbean Islands. It was during that time that I was able to stand on the balcony overlooking the ocean waters, filled with wonder about another aspect of God’s creation. And what a wonder it was!

Early Tuesday morning we were able to see land off in the distance, and we were soon docked in the port at Falmouth, Jamaica.

We went ashore and were met by the warm breezes of the Caribbean islands. It was a welcome reprieve from the cold winter we had been experiencing back home in Tennessee.

We boarded a small tour bus that morning and we were greeted by our Jamaican tour guides who took us on an insightful tour of the city of Falmouth.

We saw both the poverty of the people of a Caribbean city and the splendor enjoyed by those who were visitors to this beautiful island.

I was struck by the beauty of the lush foliage and the many fruit trees that we passed as we drove through the city. There were mangos hanging from branches, and coconuts, breadfruit, bananas and limes.

Flowers seemed to be growing everywhere along the roads.

We were told that tourism is the main industry of this island nation, and much of life for the Jamaican people is spent catering to the whims of tourists like us.

I felt blessed to be able to visit, yet I felt like an intruder at the same time.

From Jamaica we cruised to George Town, Grand Cayman, another beautiful island city, home to more than 600 banks. And the next day, we docked at the port in Cozumel, Mexico.

The people that we met at the various ports were very gracious, courteous and kind. We were foreigners, invading the tranquility of their island homes, yet they welcomed us and what we brought to their way of life.

I was so blessed to be able to visit these beautiful places, set like jewels in the midst of a vast blue ocean. I was a tourist, a visitor, an intruder; yet, I am so grateful for the privilege to make the journey.

The author of Psalm 107 wrote, “They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; these see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep.”

I have seen a new piece of the works of the Lord; and I am so thankful to have been able to make the journey, and to have experienced the wonders in the deep.

Yet, I also have developed a new appreciation for people who spend their lives in service to others. From the more than 800 crew members aboard our cruise ship who catered to our every want and need, to the people on the islands who live to care for tourists, I appreciate their service.

It is my desire to serve others too, as an act of gratitude to a great God who allows me to journey on this vast planet.

— Doug Dezotell is pastor of Cannon United Methodist Church; a husband, father and grandfather, and your friend. Doug may be reached at or call him at (931) 607-5191.