Since most everything I do in the John Ed Mathison Leadership Ministry is out of town, I have to use the services of airlines quite frequently. Rather than complain about having to travel, I’ve decided to look at travel as something from which I could learn lessons. Here are the first three lessons.
1. Flight plan. Before any plane is allowed to take off, the pilots have to file a flight plan. Planes are never allowed to just take off and “go with the currents.” They eventually would run out of fuel, and planes with no fuel crash. That flight plan is very exact and must be written down.
Some people live their lives without a plan. They just get up every day and go with the circumstances and currents. Without a life plan they drift and never reach the desired destination.
Proverbs 16:9 says, “The mind of a man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans that I have for you declared the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity, a plan to give you a future and a hope.
File and follow God’s flight plan every day.
2. Full power. When a plane takes off it takes a lot of power to get off the ground. There has to be a runway that is long enough and sufficient power to get the plane with its load up into the air.
Oftentimes planes will encounter weather difficulties during the trip. This may be a thunderstorm ahead. The plane must have the full power to get above the storm. Trying to fly through the storm can be awfully uncomfortable and dangerous. The power to get the plane above the thunderstorm makes the flight safe and comfortable.
We all have storms in life. To try to live in those storms can be awfully frustrating and dangerous. God’s desire is to give us the power to lift us above the storms of life. Jesus promised the disciples, “Ye shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.” (Acts 1:8) Exercise the full power.
3. Faith performance. Pilots and passengers must put their faith in the fact that the plane will fly. We are not required to understand the technical aspects of the jet propulsion system, but we trust it. Once a plane gets into the air the pilots and the passengers trust the navigational systems designed for the plane. We certainly don’t understand radar and communication systems, but we trust them.
In life we must have faith in things we don’t see or understand. Nobody is capable of seeing and understanding everything necessary to live. We live by faith.
Each of us faces a lot of things in life that can be an obstacle or an opportunity. We don’t have to understand why certain things happen – but we do need to commit them to God and let Him lead us above them.
Hebrews 11:1 says, “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”
Faith is not sitting and talking about how good a plane is. It is the willingness to get on the plane. Faith doesn’t mean you understand everything, but you are willing to bet your life that the plane can be trusted.