The emergency is real and vital; there is no time to waste.


EPIRB stands for Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon. An EPIRB is meant to help rescuers locate you in an emergency situation, and these radios have saved many lives since their creation in the 1970s. Boaters are the main users of EPIRBs.

You have to trust it, you need to be sure that the batteries are functioning; you need to trust that this thing is working AND THEN KNOW THE SIGNAL WILL BE HEARD – HOPE AND A PRAYER… The emergency signal went off; its signal has travelled thousands of miles and is picked up by the coast guards in Maryland, USA.

But you don’t know this. You have chosen a life style that is ‘off the grid’! Your nearest neighbours are miles away, there are no roads; you are self-sufficient. Maryland USA is thousands of miles away from the Knoydart Peninsular in Scotland, but that is where your call for help is picked up.  You don’t know it but help is on its way.

You can only hope and …?

It’s very lonely when it’s a life and death situation and you’re living ‘off the grid’. You have no car, there are no roads, you live off the land, and rely on your wisdom, knowledge and skills. You only need to visit ‘the grid’ for essential supplies. Why you choose that life style is at the very least a personal choice. One assumes that you understood both the joys and risks. Yes, there would be challenges; there would be times when you may even wonder at your choice. But for now being off ‘the grid’ is alarming. ‘There is no one to hear you scream’

“In Space, No One Can Hear You Scream.” That was the tagline for the movie Alien, Ridley Scott.

EPIRB to the rescue, but wait a minute, ultimately it’s people who are picking up the call for help, those who live on ‘the grid.’ It’s people who contact the Mountain Rescue Service in Scotland, it’s people and helicopters that fly out to rescue and transport you to hospital. A life saved. The amazing electronics of the EPIRB – supported by all sorts of other technology and people.  Many years ago a person living in the region of Cape Wrath died when cut off by weeks of driven snow in their desire to live off ‘the grid’, they ran out of food and had no back up; Cape Wrath claimed another victim. In my experience it’s not easy to live wholly self-sufficiently. I can understand the rationale to live in isolation. I can probably justify it too. 

The bible helps us to understand that we are meant to live in relationship with one another. On occasions, maybe more often, in time of stress, times when things are not going well when hope is diminished we have this incredible beacon which can be activated at anytime, anywhere and not just when we are in trouble. This beacon can be activated with a thank you; and it is not just one way, its two way – think about it, you can use it to chat and talk to the person at the other end or call for help; but never into a vacuum, not knowing if anyone will hear and pick the message up and come to your help. This is a free 24 hour solution, provided by Jesus. Should you wish to try it free of charge it’s called PRAYER. (It has a lifelong guarantee.)

Photo by Sam Radion from FreeImages