“At the name of Jesus every knee should bow…” (Philippians 2:10).
Mike Benson, Editor
ON MY RECENT trip to Oklahoma, I was privileged to also experience my first flight…
To most people, I assume, this would be a welcome new experience. For me, it was something akin to a claustrophobic being buried alive in an elevator shaft under a coal mine. I made no attempt to hide my fear. As we boarded I noticed damage to the tail of the plane. The carpet inside was somewhat frayed. I noticed everything. The stewardess I talked to had only been there a month and she was still nervous! Great!! As we pulled away from the terminal, I realized this was my last chance to go screaming down the aisle and get off. No, I would die with dignity. As we made the turn on the runway, we suddenly increased our speed to that of light and I asked God to forgive my sins. As we became airborne, the pilot began to welcome us. I didn’t want to be welcomed; I wanted him to pay attention to the plane! After a few minutes, we were informed of a few safety precautions in case we crashed into the earth at six hundred miles per hour. A few minutes after that, my son Billy asked me, “Isn’t this great and could I stop hurting his hand?” Sorry! I managed to glance out the window and again I asked God to forgive me. The stewardess asked if I was nervous. “No Ma’am, my knuckles are always white,” I replied.
After the pilot informed us we were at 36,000 feet a strange calm came over me. There was no turning back. It was, as they say, surreal. I began to look at the world in a “spiritual” way. I wondered what we must look like to God. All those people down there shopping, driving, mowing their yards, and they didn’t even realize that they were being looked at this way. Then, turbulence. The plane bounced, the wings bounced, everything bounced, and I asked God to forgive my sins. Then calm again. I realized that this was a golden opportunity for me to see how wrapped up we can become in the temporal instead of the eternal. I began to see the world rather than just the person in front of me. I understood a little better at how God looks at me. I began to think of God’s purpose for all our lives and how some will yield to it and others will not. I thought of how much better I could be and I prayed that God would help me be better. This was not only a flight from “point A” to “point B,” but a journey inside myself. It was a brief glimpse of how things really are before it again became clouded with the temporal. As we began to descend, the ride became rougher. Flaps went up and down and then the pilot reversed the thrust while I prayed for God to forgive me. We landed safely and I vowed I would not forget God’s protective hand or the value of what I had seen outside the plane and inside my life. Besides, there was always the ride back. (Tim Turpin)
“Who are these who fly like a cloud,
and like doves to their roosts?”
Isa. 60:8; cf. Matt. 6:12; Isa. 55:8-9; Deut. 26:15