In flying light aircraft, there are three foundational principles that make for safe flying.
First and foremost is your training. The things you have learned from books and from instructors; the how and the why. Something is written down somewhere about why aeroplanes fly and how we put this into practice.
Second, there’s your own experience, both as a Student Pilot and then as a qualified Pilot. Things happen, and you say to yourself, ‘Crumbs that was close; I’m not doing that again!’ or similar. You learn how things are done in the crucible of actual flight in real conditions.
Thirdly, there’s the experiences of everyone else. Nobody lives long enough to make all the mistakes that are possible; so the idea is that you learn from other Pilots’ mistakes too – near-misses; accident reports, anecdotes and so on. ‘There was that time that I nearly……’ well, you get the picture.
I liken this to a picture God gave me about twenty years ago, of a believer’s faith being like a three-legged stool. All three legs are essential for the stool to remain standing, and those legs are as follows.
Firstly, the Bible. The stuff that’s set down and accepted as established practice.
Secondly, my own experiences. Things that have happened to me that I have put down entirely to God’s intervention. Some may claim it’s just statistics and coincidences, but to me these occurrences happen far too often to be just that. My own changed life is uppermost in my mind as I write this.
And thirdly, the experiences of others. I think of people I know whose lives have been completely turned around from being completely wrecked, to being redeemed and restored. Relationships healed, minds made whole, addictions broken, emotions and self-worth restored to their proper state. I need these people around me to remind me of what God has done for them and is doing for me. Because, despite what I have said above about my own experiences, sometimes it’s easier to see God’s hand at work in others’ lives than it is in your own life.
This forms the three-legged stool. And a three-legged stool has great stability and security.
I like that kind of stool 😉