Grif.Net

09/21/19 Weekend Grif.Net – Parachutes

09/21/19 Weekend Grif.Net – Parachutes

Charles Plumb, a US Naval Academy graduate, was a =
jet fighter pilot in Vietnam.  After 75 combat missions, his plane =
was destroyed by a surface-to-air missile. Plumb ejected and parachuted =
into enemy hands.  He was captured and spent 6 years in a communist =
Vietnamese prison. He survived the ordeal and now lectures on lessons =
learned from that experience.

 

One =
day, when Plumb and his wife were sitting in a restaurant, a man =
at  another table came up and said, "You’re Plumb! You flew =
jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were =
shot down!"

 

"How in the world did you know that?" =
asked Plumb.

 

"I packed your parachute," the man =
replied.

 

Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude. The man =
pumped his hand and said, "I guess it =
worked!"

 

Plumb =
assured him, "It sure did. If your chute hadn’t worked, I wouldn’t =
be here today,"

 

Plumb =
couldn’t sleep that night, thinking about that man. Plumb says, "I =
kept wondering what he might have looked like in a Navy uniform, a Dixie =
cup hat, a bib in the back, and bell bottom trousers.  I wonder how =
many times I might have seen him and not even said good morning, how are =
you or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot and he was just =
a sailor."

 

Plumb =
thought of the many hours the sailor had spent on a long wooden table in =
the bowels of the ship, carefully weaving the shrouds and folding the =
silks of each chute, holding in his hands each time the fate of someone =
he didn’t know.

 

Now, =
Plumb asks, "Who’s packing your parachute?" Everyone has =
someone who provides what they need to make it through the day. Plumb =
also points out that he needed many kinds of parachutes when his plane =
was shot down over enemy territory — he needed his physical parachute, =
his mental parachute, his emotional parachute, and his spiritual =
parachute. He called on all these supports before reaching =
safety.

 

His experience reminds me to prepare to weather =
whatever storms lie ahead. As I go through this week, this month, this =
year, I will recognize the people who pack my =
parachute!

 

[reprint from the grif net blog 20 years ago, =
September 1999]

 

~~

Dr Bob Griffin =

bob@grif.net www.grif.net =

"Jesus Knows Me, This I =
Love!"