It seems every submarine movie includes standard scenes. After the opening credits the sub cruises at normal depth — the crew relaxed and having fun. Later during combat, the sub sinks — past crush depth, pegging the depth gauge. All is feared lost.
Standard submarine cut-and-paste scenes. The early scene sets the normal operating parameters of depth which we all know will be shattered later (as the camera lingers on the depth gauge with its prophetic red zone).
During battle, the damaged sub drifts deeper and deeper. It’s silent.
While they listen quietly to the ship’s creaks and moans, one crew member proclaims “Captain! we’re passing crush depth” (a point we all know because the depth gauge has been in the camera shot the whole time).
The crew gets quieter. Kaboom! The sub grounds on the ocean floor.
Standard submarine scenes, and as it turns out a metaphor for life.
When we leave port we’re on easy-street, just cruising along. The radio blares, the food is good. Sure, we know battles lay ahead, but it’s all abstract; right now the sun shines, we’re eating well, life is good, and everyone gets a pony.
No need to be silent.
Naturally, when the fight does come, we’re depth-charged and getting hammered, bouncing off the side of the boat, waiting for the world to finally crush us as we sink deeper and deeper. It’s then we become silent, listening to the creaks and moans.
Elijah certainly understood crush depth.
During his normal operating environment, he enjoyed a mighty victory at Mt. Carmel. Lots of noise and celebration. Puppies and ponies all around.
Soon after, the Queen goes after him.
The pressure builds.
The depth-charges come — depression, despondence, dejection, discouragement, despair. Dooooooom.
Passing through crush depth he becomes quiet, listening to the pressure build, waiting for the fate he knows will soon come — the crushing end.
During the quiet, he’s acutely listening.
A still small voice comes — the voice of the Lord. Elijah has been cowering in the cave, waiting to be crushed. But he’s listening, and the small, quiet, voice of the Lord speaks.
What doest thou here, Elijah?
The Lord proceeds to give him a message — one he missed while cruising along at normal operating depth. Only when the pressure came — and he went past crush depth — was he willing to listen.
When pressure is at it’s greatest and you’re beyond crush depth (what you think you can handle), you’re best at listening.
Because at 3AM, you’re out of options.