The righteousness of the blameless makes a straight way for them, but the unfaithful are trapped in their own wickedness.Proverbs 11:5
My friend Jim once took me up in his Cessna for a short flight. As we cruised over the tilled fields at 3500 feet, large round bales of hay on the ground looked like push-pins on a golden map.
As we flew, Jim shared some brief lessons about the fine art of flying.
- Maintain a consistent altitude. Mostly straight and level is the way to go. The altimeter, which indicates altitude, reacts to where the airplane has just been–there is a delayed reaction. Because of this, it’s easy for a beginner to “chase” the dial, which leads to erratic flight.
- If there is a mechanical failure. It’s time to find the safest place to land. Most people think if an airplane stops working mid-air there’s not much to do but prepare to meet God. In reality, it’s time to stay calm and remember your training; you are now in command of a glider!
- Most crashes are due to pilot error. Make sure you’re fully prepared for every trip and don’t fly beyond your capabilities–EVER. Preflight inspections and checklists exist for good reason. Even a small aircraft has more systems than any one person can remember to check consistently. A written plan is needed.
Maintain a consistent altitude:
A consistent walk with God day by day is better than going up and down like a yo-yo. Don’t chase the dial; trust that God has you on the best path possible. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
If there is a mechanical failure:
The only thing that’s the end of the world is the END OF THE WORLD. Most circumstances are not as bad as they seem. We don’t necessarily think like God or do things the way He does (Isaiah 55:8). So it follows, we don’t always know the true reality. The Bible contains many stories where God and some of the people on the ground didn’t see the situation the same way (my favorite is found in 2 Kings 6:8-17).
Most crashes are due to pilot error:
Work out your salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:2). We can’t do what only God can (save ourselves), but God isn’t going to do what only we can: (maintain a healthy relationship with Him.)
“When God gives me a vision of truth, there is never a question of what He will do, but only what I will do.”Oswald Chambers
That’s why a Christian pre-flight inspection–daily devotional time with God–is vital to spiritual growth.
May the ground rise up to meet you, but if it doesn’t, circle around and try again.Regular David (me)