I spent some time loving and teaching a man, Joshua, who then diligently applied with his family what he had learned and felt.
“Sometimes, though,” he said, “I forget how being loved felt. And then I get confused, and I don’t treat my family like I want to.”
“So then what do you do?” I asked.
“I remember my personal station bill.”
Knowing that he was a ship captain, I assumed his statement had something to do with that occupation. I asked, “What does that mean?”
He explained that a station bill on a ship specifies what each crewman’s place and duties are for various emergencies. He added, “I have created a station bill for myself and my family in personal situations as well. I remember that you love me. I remember that God loves me. I remember that I have everything I need to be happy, and it’s my opportunity to love my wife and children. That is my personal station bill in life, and remembering that makes a big difference.”
I watched a movie, “Sully,” which depicted the pilot of US Airways Flight 1549 landing his plane on the Hudson River after the engines had been disabled by a flock of Canada geese on January 15, 2009. The moment the pilot realized what had happened, he began to go through a checklist of procedures that had been well established by the airline industry—a printed list that every pilot carries with him on every flight. The attendants immediately fastened their seat belts and shouted, over and over, “Head down, stay down,” again following their “station bill.”
Because everyone knew what to do in an emergency—and because of the exceptional judgment of the pilot—the plane landed safely, and all 155 people aboard were rescued. Nothing like it had ever happened before.
Most of us have no station bill. When circumstances get difficult, we become afraid—even panic—at which point our decisions become distorted, often to the point of paralysis. We all need to develop our own personal station bill. We need to learn about unconditional love, and how to find it and share it consistently.
With that training and personal power, we can know what to do when things get tough.
We can remember love—felt and given—which is the most powerful force of all. We can remember that we are not trapped but always have a choice. Whatever the circumstances—emergency or not—we can save our own lives and often come to the aid of those around us.
Replace your fear and confusion with peace and happiness.
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