by John Barnett

Living In God's Family
John Barnett
I Thessalonians 5:12-15

It's true. Nothing, absolutely nothing on this earth is more important to us when the chips are down than the members of our family. Do everything possible to cultivate those relationships.

Author, J. Allan Petersen, writing on this very subject, tells of a traumatic experience he endured that drilled this fact home. It happened on an airplane. What do you think would be your last thought, your last unscheduled thought and word if you knew that in a minute or two your life was over...?

Let's put this in context....Every nook and cranny of the big 747 was crowded. It took off in the middle of the night in Brazil where I'd been speaking. As it moved into the night I began to doze. I don't know how long I slept, but I was starting to wake when I heard a strong voice announcing, "We have a very serious emergency." Three engines had gone because of fuel contamination, and the other engine would go any second. The steward said in English, "Now you must do exactly as we tell you. Don't anyone think of doing anything we do not suggest. Your life depends on us. We are trained for your safety, so you must do exactly as we tell you." Then he rattled off in Portuguese. Everybody looked soberly at one another.

The steward said, "Now pull down the curtains, in a few minutes we are going to turn off all the lights."

My thought exclaimed, "Lord." The plane veered and banked, as the crew tried to get it back to the airport. The steward ran up and down the aisle and barked out orders. "Now take that card of out the seat pocket, and I want you to look at this diagram." You know, I've flown millions of miles over the world and here I thought I had the card memorized, but I panicked because I couldn't find the crazy card.

Everybody looked stunned as we felt the plane plunge down. Finally, the steward said, "Now tighten the seat belts as tight as you can, and pull up your legs and bury you ...

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