Cockpit Panel

In the ministry it is easy to feel like a pilot who is monitoring fifty different gauges at the same time. There are so many different areas to keep an eye on. It is impossible to watch them all at the same time. But there are some gauges that are more important than others.

There is a story that Greg McKeown tells in his book Essentialism that illustrates the importance of watching the right gauges. The first wide-body plane crash occurred in the Florida Everglades December 29, 1972. However, the investigation revealed there was nothing critically wrong with the plane. The plane was in perfect working condition. So why did it crash?

As the crew had been preparing to land, the co-pilot noticed the landing gear light had not turned on. The pilot and co-pilot fidgeted with the light, not realizing the autopilot had been deactivated. There was nothing wrong with the landing gear. The wheels were down.

The crew didn’t notice that while they focused on the light, they had been losing altitude. A malfunction of the plane didn’t cause the crash. Not realizing they were coming closer and closer to the ground did.

There are many gauges and lights that can capture a pilot’s attention. But there are only a few that are vital, namely the fuel gauge, radar, and altimeter. I don’t want to minimize the complexity of ministry, but there are some gauges that are more important than others. Losing sight of truth or people would be two examples.

What do you think the most important gauges are for the church? Have you looked at them lately? Have you been distracted by less vital gauges?

Title Signature Screenshot Cartoon 2015