The rat in the plane – Graham Coyle

Categories: Blog

Some years ago a test pilot was flying a new model of jet.   At one point in the flight he heard an unusual, non-mechanical sound.  He looked down at where the sound was coming from to see a rat gnawing through one of the cables.  He realised that this was not good.  He could not deal directly with the intruder himself as he was engaged in flying the plane.  If he aimed to return to his airstrip he was fairly certain that the rat would finish its task first, probably with catastrophic results.  His only option was to deprive the rat of what it most needed; oxygen.

The pilot put on his oxygen mask and took the plane higher, much higher.  He climbed above the level where the rat could survive and sure enough, the rodent soon perished but the plane and more importantly, the pilot survived.

Here’s the point.  When we are following Jesus we encounter problems.  It is inevitable and they come as a result of the activity of God expanding His rule through us encountering a force that believes it has the authority to resist it.  This opposition will often take the form of doubt, fear or a lack of confidence and trust in God’s nature.  The way to resist these things is to starve them of what they need to survive, namely our belief that they have the authority to exist.

So, to find a greater measure of trust and belief, to see our fears and doubts evaporate, we have to take ourselves higher.  Higher in the sense of drawing closer to our Father in His divine presence, loving protection and complete provision.  The more that we become aware of Him, the more toxic an atmosphere is created for anything that dares to stand in opposition to Him and His purpose in our lives and on the Earth.

This is why it is important that we practice living with the awareness of Him caring for us as His children and constantly watching over us as we grow to be more like Jesus.  Worship is the natural response of those who live in this awareness hence it is a part of every gathering that we have.  We can and should also develop our own habits of worship.  It doesn’t have to be through music, it just needs to express our love and to exalt our Lord above everything else in our lives.  When we lose sight of God other things will quickly take His place.  Our responsibility is to continually get our focus back on Him so that nothing can take His place in our thoughts and experience.

To return to the rat, the pilot saw that in that particular situation it presented a danger and it needed to be dealt with immediately and effectively.  Are we so quick to recognise dangers to our spiritual health and to deal with them as ruthlessly?

Author: Liz Wilson

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