Originally posted on Living Better 50 magazine.
My husband recently got his private pilot’s license. During his training, he had to fly wearing something called foggles. Foggles are glasses that have been made to simulate foggy conditions, low ceiling clouds, and night to the pilot who is wearing them. They are frosted on the top half to limit the pilot’s field of vision and force them to use only the flight instruments. While wearing foggles, pilots must fly IFR, Instrument Flight Rules, rather than visually, which is known as VFR, Visual Flight Rules.
This training equips the pilot to be ready for real-life situations when there is little to no visibility. In a situation of low to no visibility, the pilot must rely on two things, his/her instruments to navigate and the air traffic controller. This takes many hours of practice to be ready for unexpected weather. A pilot who isn’t knowledgeable in instrument reading can find himself/herself in a very dangerous situation.
Many times life can be hard for us to navigate. It can leave us standing in what feels like a fog. Like a pilot, we too, need to train. Setting aside time to study God’s word prepares us for those times we find ourselves in turbulence. Pilots rely on their instruments and we can rely on God’s instrument, His word, the Bible.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. 2 Timothy 3:16 (NIV)
God’s word can guide us step by step. Take a look at what Psalm 119:105 says,
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. (NIV)
The word of God can guide you step-by-step when you feel like you are not sure what’s in front of you.
Just as a pilot counts on the air traffic controller, we can count on God. Prayer gives us a direct line to God. No need to find the correct frequency for prayer, we just need to speak and God is waiting to hear us.
Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed. Then they were glad that the waters were quiet, and he brought them to their desired haven. Psalm 107:28-30 (ESV)
In a time of distress they called upon the Lord in Psalm 107. God wants to be more than the “Mayday, Mayday” call that you make in your time of need. He wants us to be in prayer to Him daily, about everything, so that when the turbulences of life come at us we can ride them out in the security of His presence. God wants us to pray always and do it with thanksgiving.
Praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints. Ephesians 6:18 (ESV)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV)
Life is going to get bumpy. At times, you are going to feel like you are wearing foggles but when you study the Bible regularly and have a strong prayer life you can navigate your way safely through whatever lies ahead of you. If you have never done any study of the Bible and you are not sure where to start here are a few ideas.
- Some basic steps in studying the Bible: http://christianity.about.com/od/biblestudyresources/ss/biblestudy.htm
- Reading the Bible in a year: http://www.ewordtoday.com/year/
- There are many studies you can purchase. These are a few I have enjoyed.
- The Purple Book by Rice Broocks and Steve Murrell
- Breaking Free by Beth Moore
- Freedom in Christ by Neil T. Anderson
- Altar’d by Jennifer Kennedy Dean
No matter what you choose to study it is important to pray before you start your study. Ask God to give you a deeper understanding of His word. Also, don’t forget to pray daily about all things. Pray with boldness and don’t forget to give thanks. Remember, God wants to hear from you daily not just when you have a “Mayday, Mayday” prayer.
I believe that you wouldn’t want to be in a plane with a pilot that doesn’t know how to read his/her instruments. How scary it would be to have the pilot frantically looking through the pages of the flight-training book to get you through the fog. Please don’t wait until you are in the middle of the fog to grab your Bible.
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