Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Born to Fly

Some people were born to fly. My husband is one such person.

He is a pilot; flying is as natural to him as breathing, and almost as essential.

But because of God's call on our lives, David has sacrificed his love of flying for the sake of sharing the gospel in France. He left a career he loved, not knowing when, or even IF he would ever fly a plane again. But he hoped....

This week David met with a man who sells Cirrus Design airplanes in France. David has done some work for Cirrus in the states: as a Certified Flight Instructor, David delivered Cirrus Airplanes to new owners and then trained the owners in their new planes. It turns out that since Cirrus planes are manufactured in the United States, when a French person buys a Cirrus plane, it arrives in France with a US tail number. With his FAA certification, David can train pilots anywhere in the world as long he is training them in a plane with a US tail number. All of this to say...the Cirrus salesman has asked David if he would be willing to train Cirrus owners here in France, just a few days each month.

Of course, it is no simple endeavor. Issues like insurance and work permits have to get worked out and David needs a few hours of retraining to be "current." But both parties have happily agreed to begin the process.

Both GEM (our mission organization) and Raphael (our church planting mentor/trainer) have encouraged David to pursue this VERY part-time employment opportunity:
  • GEM is encouraging David to fly because they have found that Europeans are suspicious of people who do not have "real" jobs. By spending a few hours a month pursuing a respectable career, David will gain credibility in our community. We will have an easier time making friends with unbelievers and we will have more opportunities to integrate into French culture. GEM has discovered that having missionaries IN the marketplace increases both the depth and breadth of their effectiveness. 
  • Raphael is encouraging David to fly because most of French pastors who are trained as church planters in France MUST be bi-vocational. New churches here can rarely afford to pay their pastor a salary. If David spends some time working as a pilot, he will be able to model bi-vocational living. It will allow David to live a life that other church planters can seek to emulate. 
Perhaps David is getting his wings back. We shall see what God will do. 


  1. I love that David has followed this thread to keep flying high as he works to build churches that bring Frenchmen to His High Calling. Maybe the Cirrus dealer?

  2. What a perfect treat. So happy for DR I know his love of flying and how wonderful that it will all work out. SO SO happy.

  3. I ran across your blog this morning. It's been fun to catch up on what you're doing in France. It feels like ages since we lived there...but it hasn't even been 2 years. Is there a "summary" of where you're living and going to church while in Paris? We lived in Gentilly (RER B) and went to Trinity International Church.

  4. That's really exciting! God is such a wonderful provider! He gives us gifts we couldn't dream up no matter how hard we tried.