It is very easy when you first arrive on Tiree to lose your bearings. The length of the island lies east – west and not as you tend to think north – south. Although you are aware that Tiree is an island, there are occasions when it appears to be joined to one of its neighbours. So at times the Munro ‘Ben More’ on Mull seems to be over the brow of the road and a bit further on – simply because momentarily the sea is hidden from view.
You know that neighbouring islands don’t shift. Yet, within the space of a few minutes, when out driving, an island can appear to have shifted. This is often the case with the Dutchman’s Cap. However, it is equally true of Eigg and Rum. Bays and roads all contribute to this phenomena.
You know that the sun sets in the west, but throughout the year it appears to go down at different places on the horizon. You associate a red sky at night with the west, but often the clouds to the east take on a distinct red or pink tinge. Even the Machair has a beauty all of its own as the sun sets in the west.
Our three highest hills, Ben Hynish (141m), Kenavara and Ben Hough do help you find your bearings. However there are occasions when approaching by sea, particularly when sailing towards the Gunna Sound and Tiree from Barra, these hills seem to be in completely the wrong place.
When out and about there are three distinct landmarks that help you take your bearings. In the west is the Golf Ball on top of Ben Hynish. Towards the East is Tilley the island’s tallest wind turbine. And at Scarinish there is the BT Tower. And with the island being only 11 miles long and at the most 5 miles wide and in places only a mile wide, you cannot get lost. Can you?
Our Creator God has given us his trustworthy Word, the Bible as a map and compass to guide us through life and land us safe on the other side. A good place to start reading is in the second half of the Bible in Mark’s Gospel – Mark’s Good News about Jesus.