Contrary to popular belief, I am not someone who travels well. I love home, a lot. Despite this, I travel around 10-12 times year because of work, family, and vacation. I experience a flight delay or cancellation on eight of those twelve trips.
Wasting time in airports isn’t particularly new to me. Growing up, my dad’s airline job afforded him the opportunity to travel — something he truly enjoyed. My dad loves to take us to unique places, and I’ve been all over the world with him by flying standby. Standby, contrary to popular opinion, is not what it’s cracked up to be. It meant arriving at the airport and spending 5–15 hours biting your nails and begging God to get you to and from a destination. It meant sleeping in major airports like Chicago O’Hare, LAX, and Newark when we missed a flight. It meant not making flights and going back home because there were no empty seats on the plane.
If you are someone like me who likes plans, structure, and order — this is nothing but stressful. When I started making my own income, I stopped flying standby because I didn’t enjoy the tension and anxiety my free flights were producing. To me, it was worth the couple hundred bucks knowing I would end up at my destination — and more importantly return home on my own terms.
A couple days ago, I flew standby for the first time in two years. I was flying back to New York on a Sunday. These are impossible city and travel time combinations, and every flight was overbooked. I made it to my gate and saw the flight was oversold, and there were three people ahead of me on the list.
There was no way I was making it on this plane.
I’ve recently started Steven Furtick’s “The Sun Stand Still” on the Bible app and read about Gideon asking God to make “the sun stand still” (Judges 10). Gideon, literally, asked God to stop the sun so he could win a battle. I don’t know about you, but that appears to be a fairly extraordinary thing in our normal world.
I realize how ultimately silly this might sound to you — but I asked God to make the “sun stand still” and get me on the next flight. I had an emotionally draining weekend, and all I wanted to do was return home so I could reflect and decompress. I wanted to go home to improve the quality of my life in that moment. To some people, that might be selfish – but to me, it speaks to the nature of God. I think God actually cares we are rested, whole, and taken care of. I think we can ask him to do impossible things for us so our lives can propel forward.
I got on that plane that day.
God actually held up a connecting flight and opened up five seats. As soon as they closed the door, the connecting flight passengers showed up. God held up a connecting flight so I could go home because I asked him if he could make the sun stand still so I could go home.
That day, God made the sun stand still for me. He is constantly making the sun stand still for me. I actually believe God wants us to include him in the silly things — like flying standby. I also think he wants to show up for us in the big things too, like believing him for healing, callings, and new opportunities.
If we ask Him, He is willing to make “impossible” things in our todays possible to Him.