Jamie flying

Flying Shotgun

by Jamie S., BSN student
Ibambi, Democratic Republic of Congo

After forty hours of travel and an overnight in the Entebee, Uganda airport, it was finally time to board our last plane to the Congo. The African heat greeted us as we made our way onto the runway to our small 9 passenger plane. I sat in the back and was about to buckle when the pilot asked if anyone wanted to ride up front in the co-pilot seat. I couldn’t say yes or jump out of the plane fast enough! Of course I wanted to ride shotty!!! I climbed aboard and strapped myself in. At this point, I could barely contain my excitement and had a ridiculously large smile plastered on my face (that remained with me the rest of the flight).

We took off and I gazed down at God’s beautiful creation. Tears streamed down my face as I just kept thinking, “Who is this God I serve? And how is it that the Creator of the universe cares for me? Thank you Papa. Thank you for this wonderful gift!”

The view was spectacular. We flew over mountains, lakes, rivers, and miles and miles of jungle land. Once we passed through the clouds I became even more enamored with the beauty that surrounded me.

All along I’m still streaming thoughts of thanks toward God. “Thank you for letting me witness your creation from in the front of the plane, thank you for allowing me to know you and to make you known, thank you for allowing me to come to the Congo to represent you!”

Then a voice broke through my reverie.

“Would you like to fly the plane?” the pilot asked.

I thought he was joking. Nope. After a quick lesson he gave me complete control of the plane.

I was flying!

I was flying the plane into the Congo!

Somehow I think the smile on my face got even bigger as I wove in and out of the clouds! What a great day and great start to our outreach.

I flew until we neared our destination. As the pilot dipped the plane below the clouds, I gazed over the land once more. “This is your country, Lord, and these are your people,” I thought. “Go with us Lord. Help us bring the truth into this place. Transform hearts the way you have transformed mine. Thank you for this opportunity.”

We descended further. All I could see were trees. I wondered where we would land when suddenly a little dirt airstrip appeared and we landed in the middle of the jungle. We were here. We made it to Ibambi.