Lessons from Southwest Airlines …

I traveled commercial the past couple of weeks(yes, I know I’m spoiled).  Have you ever flown Southwest Airlines?  You check in, but don’t get a seat assignment.  You get a lane assignment and a number.  I was fortunate all but 1 time to be in the “A” group.  Then you have a number from 1-60.  That is the order in which you line up.  Once you get onto the plane, the window and aisle seats are taken first.  Then the fun begins.

I’m a people watcher.  Have you ever watched people load the plane on a Southwest Flight?  The ladies(young and old alike) all look for other ladies to sit next to or older men.  They know that they’ll be “safe” that way.  The young guys all look for the lady that is attractive to them.  The older guys could care less.  They just sit anywhere. They’ll start-up a conversation with anyone.  It’s funny to watch the people’s faces as they go down the aisle looking around; knowing the aisle and window seats are gone; looking for that friendly face or the face that will ignore them.  They make quick judgements based on a look; a wardrobe; a culture; and yes a race of who they sit next to.

Last night, we got on the plane only to have to de-plane(don’t ever fly commercial with me).  When it was time to re-board, we were on the “honor system.”  So, we lined up again and boarded again.  This time several people switched seats.  Again, the looks people gave of relief; apprehension; nervousness; trying to find a seat was entertaining.

But, as I watched the scene unfold before me, I couldn’t help but think of witnessing to those around us.  You have young people who are freshly saved and excited about Christ.  They don’t care what you think.  They’re going to share the Gospel with you.  They actually think it’s cool if you look at them weird.  Older people don’t care, because they’ll talk to everyone.   They have the security of a long life under their belts.  They don’t care what you think.  They’ll just tell you about their life and about their God.

My generation, however, still has misgivings about witnessing.  We don’t want to offend people.  We don’t want to anger people.  We don’t want people to dislike us.  We also make judgements.  Just like people boarding a plane make quick judgements about why not to sit next to that person or why to sit next to that person.  We determine by age; race; culture; dress; etc. who we will witness to and who we will ignore.  Or, we determine it isn’t “politically correct” to be a witness.

How about this?  What if we lived each day to the best of our ability to please God?  What if we asked Him for an opportunity to share “His Story” with someone?  What if we just asked for the strength to include God in ALL areas of our conversation each day?  Then when/if God brought the opportunity to be a witness, we stepped in and was the “Ambassador” Christ called us to be.  Somehow I believe as we did this, it would get easier and more comfortable talking of the things of Christ.  Then we would be like the older guy who doesn’t care who he sits next to.  His Saviour died for him; loves him and he wants to tell everyone.

I’m not there yet … but that’s where I desire to be …

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