A Nobel Prize winner, an old pastor and a boy scout were flying across the Atlantic when the pilot came bursting through the door and announced: “We’ve lost both engines, and there are only three parachutes on the plane. I only received my pilot’s license last month and I still have to serve a lot of people; I simply have to live.” With that he grabbed a parachute and jumped.
The Nobel Prize winner said: “Just last week I received the prize for being the smartest man on earth. I have a lot of work to do for mankind, sorry, I also have to live.” He grabbed what he thought was a parachute on the airplane floor and jumped.
The pastor turned to the boy and said; “Son, I have lived a long life; I have put my faith in what Jesus has done for me and I know for certain that when I die I will go to heaven. You are young and have your whole life ahead of you. You take the last parachute and jump.”
“Not to worry sir,” the boy replied, “there’s still two chutes left; the smartest man in the world just jumped out with my backpack.”
What a story!!! It illustrates something truer than we might think, “Look before you leap.” Sometimes we think we know more than everyone else. We consider ourselves smarter than all the rest. We may have even won outstanding awards. But when trouble comes how does it work out?
Many have grabbed the closest thing at hand. We have taken whatever is close and assumed it was what we needed and what we thought it was. But mistakes can be made and they can be great!
Scripture describes those who didn’t look and leaped too soon. “These people draw near to me with their mouth, and honor me with their lips, but their heart is far from me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.” (Matthew 15:8-9) It’s a paraphrase of Isaiah 29:13. We must not let this describe us!
Jumping out of a crashing airplane is one thing. But jumping out of Life into Eternity is quite another. Be sure you have the parachute God has provided through the Messiah. Don’t trust your words. Be sure you have a personal God relationship that will give you sufficiency and security.
Till next time, Don Johnson, Kirby Pines Chaplain