Every once in a while, I think about Frieda Muscatell and Larry Snodgrass, two friends of mine who were passengers on US Airways Flight 1549, "the miracle on the Hudson."  If you haven't seen the movie about it, 'Sully', you should watch it.  In discouraging and difficult times, it's good to think about death-defying feats of courage, steadiness under pressure, teamwork, care for one's fellowman, and survival against all odds.  It edifies the soul and brings us a greater sense of  security and hopefulness in each of our lives.

Flying is one of those times when we literally place our lives in another's hands.  Whenever I board an aircraft, I always find myself glancing left as I step onboard, hoping to catch a glimpse of the captain.  I've noticed that he, or she, always looks so calm, purposeful, and in complete control.  That always brings me a sense of confidence and reassurance about my flight.  Today's aircraft are incredibly automated, but as Flight 1549 proved, the best thing we have going for us when we fly is the knowledge that the finely skilled hands of the pilot are at the controls.

But isn't all of life that way?  I'm comforted to know that, no matter what happens, God is still in charge.  His almighty hands are on the controls of this unpredictable world, and it's still God who controls the natural order of things.  Of course, life is always subject to the unpredictable and the unforeseen.  But in perhaps the most stressful moment of their entire lives, both Frieda Muscatell and Larry Snodgrass told me that, after the initial wave of panic and concern, a palpable sense of calm came over them.  In that critical moment, both reached deep inside to that place wherein our faith dwells, and they realized that, no matter what happened, they were held secure in God's hands and there they would be protected.  How did the apostle Paul say it? "Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord."

When we fly, we can rest assured that a capable, experienced pilot is at the controls.  Likewise, when we go to bed at night, not knowing what the next day may bring forth, we can sleep at peace knowing that our heavenly Father is still at the controls of this world and that, no matter what happens, nothing can separate us from His love, constant vigilance, and eternal keeping.

 

In the name of the One who can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,
Bruce Jones, Pastor and Co-Creator,
Imagine Church of the Carolinas
Still at the Controls

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