On the trip to Madang, we flew in a plane operated by MAF, Mission Aviation Fellowship. I flew with Gail, Kristen, and Pam, and they said I could ride up front with the pilot. I thought it would be neat to see out the front of the plane, to have the view the pilot does, so I got inside. I quickly found out this wasn't such a good idea. I had a great view of all the instruments and gears, which I know nothing about, but that was it. I decided there must be a height requirement to be a pilot, or else short ones must sit on a book, because I couldn't see over the instrument panel. Thankfully, there was a side window, so I was able to see out and enjoy the view from the plane, but I let Kristen sit in the front on the way home.
I had started reading a book by Jerry Bridges, "Trusting God Even When Life Hurts," while we were at Madang. The books talks about God's Sovereignty over all things, the good and the bad, and how we need to trust Him in everything. The day we were to leave, I got to put into practice what I was reading. We were suppose to fly back to Kudjip on Tuesday, but that morning we had thunder and lightening, so our flight was delayed. They told us the flight may be cancelled, and we may not get home til Friday or Saturday. I knew I needed to go home, I was on call that night, and didn't think the other docs would appreciate me being out 3 more days. Did I trust God to work in this situation, did I really believe that if we got home on Tues, Fri, or Sat it would be okay? The answer was no, I prayed and asked God to help, but still struggled with the thought of not getting back til Friday or later.
We spent a lot of the day waiting and wondering what would happen. We got word the flight was on, so we got to the airport, excited about going home. We were waiting at the airport when they told us the flight wasn't going to happen. The plane had to go back to Hagen to refuel, but couldn't come to get us because the pilot had been in the air too long that day. We tried to tell the MAF folks in Madang we had to get back, I had to work, and Gail had to take care of her kids. They didn't sound too promising, but thankfully they radioed the folks in Hagen and explained our situation and they found another pilot who was able to come from Hagen and take us back. Thankfully we got back on Tues, but I know I still have a ways to go in Trusting God in all situations.