flying by… trust?

Just as an airplane has directional instruments the pilots trust, God has given us directional instruments we can trust for our spiritual journey.

If a plane encounters turbulence, airplane flights can be, shall we say, adventurous. Passengers don’t need the pilot to give the play by play to figure that out. “Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain from the flight deck. Were experiencing a little bit (notice how they always use that adjective?) of turbulence, and we request that you remain seated and keep your seat belt fastened. We should be clear in a short while.” Okay thanks, I didn’t feel that on my own.trust

It’s probably good that you don’t know a few other things that aren’t readily noticeable back in coach. For instance, do you have a guess as to how often the plane is actually on course? Unless you’re an aviator, your guess is probably too high. The correct answer is 5% of the time. Five percent. Yeah. Out of a hundred. Yet the planes get us to our destinations, not always on time, but they get us there. If you think about it, lots of stuff like other planes, weather, or even a flock of birds can take a plane off course, and require the pilot to make course corrections. So how does the pilot get the plane back on course? Just like he or she does at night or in foul weather- as the phrase goes, they “fly by the instruments.” They trust the data. I’ve always been amazed to glance into the cockpit when I’m entering or exiting the plane and see all. those. instruments. They are there for good reason, from a basic compass to highly sophisticated computerized programs, and I’m glad the flight crew knows what they are all for. I just know they all work together to inform the pilots which way to chart the course or correct the course.

What a great analogy for decision making. Our lives (okay, at least my life) can get off course an awfully high percentage of the time. The way back is the same as for a plane that’s off course- fly by the instruments. Just as GPS and compasses provide unchanging data from our predictably created earth, God has given us instruments we can trust for our spiritual journey as well. He gave us Himself- in the flesh to show us and teach us. He created us to be in relationship and communication with Him for every need we could possibly encounter.

Here’s a truth. We will get off course as we live and make decisions, and may be off course as much as a plane on an average flight. We will therefore need course correction. What’s your plan?

Rev. Greg Griffin is a Board Certified Pastoral Counselor and Forgiveness Coach in private practice in Marietta, GA. His specialty is relationship repair and rescue- helping partners, spouses, and parents and their adolescents. He’s also the author of Dungeon Times Survival Guide, and Vital Faith.


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