Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Sky High Lessons


“Would you like a window or aisle seat?”

The answer comes as easily as saying my name. Window please.

For those of you who have ever ridden on an airplane, you know it can be quite the experience. Long lines, hurried travelers, and quart-sized bags of liquids are commonplace. But for me, those are but small inconveniences when they allow me to sit down next to that tiny window that gives me a glimpse into the world that God has made.

I was privileged to travel quite a bit in the past few weeks, and each time I stepped foot on the aircraft, it seemed like God had something to teach me.

A Paradox: [par-uh-doks] “a statement, seemingly absurd, yet really true”
Part of the reason I love sitting next to the window is because it makes me so in awe of my Creator God, who made the mountains and the oceans and the forever long stretches of green. In my own little bubble, I can quickly forget just how BIG the world is. But at seven miles into the sky, I am quickly reminded.
This then prompts the realization of just how SMALL I am. I can get so easily lost in my own little world, forgetting that there are 7 billion other people roaming about this place we call earth. And this is where I stand in awe of my Personal God, who made ME and knows ME intimately, and desires to be in relationship with ME. Can this be true? In a world that is bigger than my finite mind can possibly begin to wrap itself around, God loves me personally, enough to send His Son to die for me.
“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?" [Psalm 8:3-4]

Generosity:  [jen-uh-ros-i-tee] “readiness or freedom in giving”
My former neighbor, and USAirways pilot, Dave Hoffmann, found out at the beginning of the year that I was pursuing becoming a missionary in Africa. With potential ministry partnerships too far away to drive, he offered his one and only registered guest pass to me. This is no small gift, as I am able to fly anywhere in the US for free, allowing me to reach people and places that I would otherwise be unable to (see below!) His generosity left me speechless, and pointed me back to our Father who is the prime example of what it looks like to give freely in the first place:
“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave Him up for us all- how will he not also, along with Him, graciously give us all things?” [Romans 8:32]

Body of Christ:  [bod-ee] “a number of individuals regarded as a single entity”
Never in my life could I have imagined that I would be a guest speaker at a church one day, but that is precisely what happened this past weekend at First Baptist Church in Colfax, IA. This church brought a group of youth and adults to West Virginia last summer for their missions trip, and when they found out I was embarking on a missions trip of my own, they were enthusiastic to support. My main contact, Kendra Halferty, outdid herself as she coordinated the whole weekend to be filled with fun events aimed at making my time special. I was reunited with the group from last year, in addition to meeting many more members of their church. I was again reminded that together, we can be more powerful for the Lord than we are apart. I was blessed beyond belief by their desire to partner with me in my ministry, and I walked away with a great sense of unity that bridges the gap between Delaware and Iowa.
“The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.” [1 Corinthians 12:12]

So the next time you are able, look out your window. Whether that be the window of a house, car, or airplane, check out what surrounds you. Take a moment to breathe in the reality that God created the world you are living in and has created you to be in meaningful relationships with those who fill it.

Yes, definitely. Window please.