Jump directly to the Content

Emergency Instructions

Urgent messages must sound urgent, and other entries from Gordon's journal.

From my journal: It sounds almost liturgical. "Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome aboard U.S. Air flight 354 to Charlotte. In preparation for departure, be sure that all carry-on items are placed under the seat in front of you. Seat backs and tray tables must be in their upright position."

There follows a description of the safety belts (metal end into the buckle), oxygen masks (adults first, then children), water-flotation devices (pull on this handle), emergency exits (two here; two there), and the smoking rule (don't!).

Admission: I usually do not listen to this airline liturgy, having heard bits and pieces of it a thousand times. But on this occasion I am impressed with the dreary monotone, speed-speaking voice that emerges from a bored heart. And it hits me! The voice speaks of things that will be very, very important to me if something goes wrong. If the cabin depressurizes in flight, will I really know what to do with the mask? If a swift exit is necessary, do I really know ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

July/August
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

From the Magazine
They Fled Ukraine, and Ukraine Followed
They Fled Ukraine, and Ukraine Followed
Escaping Russian missiles, some exiled believers found a new sense of purpose helping refugees.
Editor's Pick
When Churches Put Love at the Center
When Churches Put Love at the Center
How "beloved community" helps us envision tangible ways to embody kingdom values.
close