People from my generation may remember the title of this blog comes from a book (made into a movie) about a WWII pilot. The saying and idea that God is our co-pilot has been picked up and used to show how God influences our life and is with us.
But God isn’t a co-pilot.
Technically, the co-pilot is the second in command of the aircraft, junior to the Captain. Although he has the same skills and training, the Captain is (usually) the more experienced.
I don’t think God is ‘junior’ to anyone. And when we put God in the job of co-pilot, we are taking away His authority and replacing it with our own.
Actually, I think God is the Navigator. Although the Navigator is an NFO (Non Flight Officer), he is , in his own rights (or hers), the one who directs the plane.
The Navigator is the one responsible for making sure the flight path is known and that the plane stays on course, and the Captain and Co-Pilot follow the directions of the Navigator. Even though the Captain is the one driving the plane, the Navigator is the one who tells him where it goes.
That sounds more like how God influences our lives.
God knows what is best for us and He can see where we need to go; He directs us through the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) so that we stay on course. When we ignore His directions, we get lost. That is why so many people, both saved and unsaved, are flying at hundreds of miles per hour, making distance but not getting where they need to be. And some are not even flying a parallel course to salvation, but are going in the opposite direction. They are lost and getting farther and farther from their God-given target.
We all want to feel like we are in charge -it is almost a part of the human psyche to want to be the one giving the orders. It’s my choice, it’s my life, it’s my decision and I have a right to do what I want to do. Yes, you do have that right. God gave each of us Free Will so that we can make our own decisions.
He is hoping that we make the right ones, the most important (I think) being that it may be my life, but God gave it to me and He never really gave me full title to it. It is His to give and His to take away.
As Job said when he lost everything in the world (or, should I say, everything of the world) that meant anything to him, all within the span of a few minutes:
The Lord has given and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.
Everything that there is, ever has been or ever shall be belongs to God. We may be given many wonderful blessings, but what we have is still His- He has made us governors, managers and tenders of His creation, but He has not given it to us as a permanent possession. Even the land, which is promised to us as an inheritance, was given to us from others, and God clearly and unabashedly warns us that if we do not treat the land with respect and keep it free of sin (specifically the sins of the prior owners) then we, too, will be ejected. We read this warning in Deuteronomy, in Leviticus, in Isaiah, in 2 Chronicles- throughout the Tanakh we are told, over and over, that the former occupants are being ejected because of the sins they polluted the land with, and that if we also turn from God’s commandments and pollute the land with those same sins, we will be ejected, too.
And that is exactly what happened.
We may be driving the plane, but we need to listen to our Navigator- he is really the one getting the plane where it needs to go. He has the maps, he knows the way, and he can see how far off course we are getting. We are in control of the plane, no doubt, but if we don’t listen to our Navigator we will never get to the landing field; we will fly naively thinking we are really going somewhere, but when we run out of fuel we will crash and burn.
Listen to your Navigator, respectfully obey His directions, and keep on the life course that God has given you. We all get to do what we want to do, and when we want to listen to our Navigator we will fly sure, with good weather and clear skies. Even if we do have to fly through some heavy clouds and we can’t see where we are, our Navigator knows; all we have to do is go where he tells us to go.
Letting God run your life is not giving up being in charge of it, it is simply making the decision to let God tell you which direction to take. You are still in charge of where you go. And you are also able to let someone else tell you where to go- that is the real problem we all face. Knowing which Navigator to listen to.
When you read the bible you learn who God is; when you accept Messiah Yeshua as your Savior and ask for the Holy Spirit, you will receive it; knowing who God is, accepting Yeshua and having the Ruach haKodesh is the only way you will know God’s voice from the voice of the enemy.
Then, knowing God’s voice, you will be able to pick the Navigator who will direct you to Eternal joy.