14 Dec Meet Joni
“This past spring, I traveled to Virginia Beach for the graduation of my niece from Regent University. Because plane tickets from MN to Norfolk are expensive, my husband was unable to join me and I had to fly by myself. While my dad used to work for American Airlines and I’ve flown A LOT over the years, for some reason, I still really do NOT enjoy flying – especially the turbulence! In an effort to help me focus on the Lord and not be fearful, I purposely saved my Riding Tandem lesson to do during the three hours flying out and the return trip home.
Half-way through the flight, the pilot made the announcement that the flight attendants needed to be seated and everyone must keep their seatbelts secured due to expected turbulence. As God would have it, the lesson I had saved to do during the flight was Week 5, Enjoy the Ride. Immediately following the pilots announcement, I read page 75: “We cannot allow the fear of our circumstances to override the confidence in our Captain. When bumps hit here and there, they do not take God by surprise.” As the plane was shaking this way and that (the WORSE turbulence I have EVER experienced) I realized that God had created this lesson with me in mind. I didn’t like the way the trip was going, however, my Captain had CHOSEN for the experience to be just this way. No bump surprised or scared Him. Instead of the plane being “out of control,” it was totally in control the very way He intended.
I needed to figure out what exactly I was afraid of. I knew I wasn’t afraid of dying (I’m certain I will be with Jesus). I realized that what I was afraid of (if the plane were to crash) would be the “going down” part and that it would be scary and possibly painful. As I was thinking this through, I read on page 76, Psalm 37:24 “When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong!” The Lord knows me so well. He wanted me to realize that in the grand scheme of things – EVEN IF the plane were to crash – the time I would be fearful would be short and He would have me with Him forever.
For the remainder of the trip, the turbulence did not change, but my focus had. I no longer looked at the plane as out of control, but a situation that I was Riding Tandem with my Captain – for my good and His glory.
When we landed, I turned my phone on and the first text was from my husband asking how the ride went and how I was doing. First, I jokingly told him that I needed to join the other 149 passengers kissing the GROUND! Then I told him my Bible Study lesson TOTALLY applied and I couldn’t WAIT to share it with my class the next week!
The flight back home? It was like riding on smooth glass. No turbulence at all! But I learned so much more through the first part of the trip when I first thought I would rather have had it smooth : )
Bottom line: Our Captain knows best!”
By: Joni P. (Age 58), Bible Teacher – Bloomington, Minnesota
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