Losing Altitude.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

Psalm 46:1

You know those airplane movies where the aircraft is packed to capacity. Passengers are on their way to some fun destination. The music is cheerful, serene. A peek through a side window shows an outstretched wing like the arm of God as the mechanical bird glides smoothly through the atmosphere, unhindered by cloud cover or even mild thunder storms.

The scene draws a gullable viewer to ease back in their seat and rest awhile.

Until there’s a bird strike or some other mechanical problem that cripples the plane.

Oh geez. Now what, I beg, a hand pressed to my thrumming heart.

That thing begins to lose altitude. That’s what.


While the intensity of the music increases, the camera pans to the view through the windshield. To see what the pilot sees...

Jagged mountain peaks of the Great Himalayan Mountain Range loom. They appear to enlarge in size as the pilot scrambles to lift the craft above it.

There are seasons of life that feel like I’m losing altitude. Maybe you’ve felt that, too?

~ When bills are past due

~ When the doc reports there’s evidence of active disease

~ When dreaded divorce papers arrive

~ When dreams of being blessed with children are shattered by miscarriage

~ When the job went to a “better” candidate… time and time again

~ When a life is taken

~ When children deny Christ

~ When a Cat 5 hurricane robs all possessions

Circumstances can cause my eyes to round as though life’s airplane is inches from crashing into the jagged peaks below.

But this I know: God holds me safely in His mighty hand for the duration of the ride.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble…Psalm 46:1

I will turn all My mountains into roads. Isaiah 49:11a

He pilots the unpredictable excursion over life’s varied topography below, fully aware of the challenges and difficulties.

God never promises a smooth and uneventful flight, but as my pilot, He always promises to navigate me safely through it all. 

God never promises a smooth and uneventful flight, but as my pilot, He always promises to navigate me safely through it all.

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It just might be that the experience of “losing altitude” is nothing more than my fear-drenched perspective, altering my ability to see the undaunted face of Jesus within the cockpit, convinced the situation is hopeless when it is not.

How have you handled hardships that have you feeling like you’re losing altitude, about to crash into the mountain below?

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