Flight follower, that is. I don’t keep up with Twitter and Pinterest like many of you out there, but I am familiar with the term “follow.” Getting followers is nice, right? It’s nice to feel that people value our opinions and are interested in what we’re doing.
Having a flight follower isn’t exactly a popularity contest. It’s a requirement. When flight training started for Jared and a fellow trainee this past week, we wives were given a crash course in flight following. My past experience with this task has been, “If the airplane doesn’t get back within a reasonable amount of time, call somebody.”
Not anymore. Now I watch my screen for the little blip that comes up every five minutes showing where the aircraft is on the map. I watch for communication from the pilot at least every 20 minutes. It’s a far cry from, “If I’m not back before midnight…”
Don’t get me wrong–it’s not overwhelming (unless the kids are in the background misbehaving, clamoring for snacks, and running with scissors all at the same time). In fact, this job is supposed to be boring. If it’s not boring, something is seriously wrong. (It could also mean my internet isn’t working or I’m not getting good cell service at the moment.)
Flight following is designed to keep people safe. If there’s an accident, the quicker it’s detected and responded to the better.
Of course, I can’t let this go without a spiritual analogy. Does it remind you of the Christian life? We’ve all got some issues we carry around with us on this journey called life. But we also have the Holy Spirit–the most faithful “flight follower” of all, who consistently nudges us back to the right path, if we’re listening. And many of us have faithful friends who call us back to the truth when we start to wander.
I’m flight following right now, and pretty soon I’ll get a message from the pilot that reads, “OTGF” (on the ground and finished for the day). I’ll be really glad to shut the computer and walk away…but, man! I’m glad the Holy Spirit never calls it quits for the day!