Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Missions

I grew up in a small town, where Santa came on the train (my uncle) to the town square and Christmas music played from the courthouse tower. Never in my wildest dreams did I think of Christmas deep in the jungle of Borneo or that is where I would spend many Christmas times to come in my life ! No snow, just Heat and lots of it. Nothing felt the same about Christmas in the jungle, yet for one thing. That birth, the Son of God, in the heat or the cold, I still had those same feelings. I missed all the traditions that I grew up with but no matter what country I was in or what language or Hot or Cold, Christmas was still about the Christ child. The whole reason that I and my family were sweating on Christmas day in the middle of the jungle. It was just as good and now that I was out there serving as a missionary pilot it even made it better. My kids, its all they know growing up and their memories are of Christmas in the jungle and nothing like mine growing up. We took the airplane out to the missionaries bringing gifts from home and my wife's cookies too. That C-185 made a great sleigh.
Christmas is Christmas no matter where you are in the world. Hope your Christmas was Christmas wherever you are this year. Capt Hook

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Is Missionary Aviation still needed?

It is asked everywhere I go and it is a very legitimate question "Is Missionary Aviation still needed?" Before someone applies to a school, changes careers, or leaves a good paying job to go back to school, it is good to know if what you want to do is needed and you have a place to go when you graduate.

The quick answer to that question is YES! I have been in recruiting now for over 15 years and I have never had to tell someone that met our requirements and qualified through our technical evaluation that there was not a place for them. One of the limiting factors for us in our ministry is the lack of personnel to accomplish the work.

Pilot/Mechanics and Maintenance Specialists are needed all over the world on our programs, as well as with other missions. We want to continue to encourage people to move forward in this niche of Christian missions that allows people to use their specific gifting and talents in aviation for the glory of God. If you love aviation and you love Jesus, what could possibly be better? Now you know you are needed.

Have great Christmas as we celebrate our Lord's earthly birth.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Recruiting or Guidance????

From the Recruiting Department, we often reflect on the fact that we are not traditional "recruiters" that are trying to get anyone and everyone into the organization. As I tell "recruits" frequently, "Getting you into MAF is God's job, not mine!" We see our job more as guidance counselors, helping you with determining if MAF is the 'fit' for you, what a good training plan might be for service with MAF, encouragement along the way, and to make sure you're getting all the required 'stuff' into your training plan.

There are so many great organization out there that one could serve with, and sorting that out for you is one of the tough issues. We're here to help and to point out some other options if you're not sure MAF is the way to go for you. Our main objective is to help you move towards what God has called you to do and we in no way can pretend to know what that direction is. God will make that clear in your own heart and mind. That passage in the Bible that talks about the "peace that passes all understanding" comes to mind here! You will experience that peace when you know it's right for you to go with a specific organization. Just because MAF is the largest with the most opportunities does not mean it's for you.

Contact your local recruiter and learn more about MAF, options for training, and hear their stories of service within MAF and our working relationships with many other organizations!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

As I sit here at my desk this cold, snowy morning planning another recruiting trip it seems as if I just got back from one. :) The week before Thanksgiving I did a whirlwind trip (1700 miles in 5 days) where I had lunch and dinner with a different recruit each day (sometimes breakfast or afternoon coffee too) where I visited 2 colleges (and drove past 3 more that I didn't have time to stop at) and got home worn out.

And it would be easy to sound like I'm complaining but I'm actually thankful. In fact, one of our family traditions before our Thanksgiving day meal is to go around the table before we eat and say what we're thankful for. We actually went around 4 times this year (it's great to have adult children!) and one of the times I mentioned that I am thankful for the work the Lord has given me to do.

You see, I remember back when I was first investigating what being a missionary aviator was all about. I had lots of questions and not many answers. And I wasn’t even sure where to go for some of the answers. But I also remember a few "older" folks from various mission organizations patiently answering my myriad questions. And if they didn’t have the answer, they would find out for me.

I also remember how God used those answers and those people to direct me into the ministry He had for our family. So when I am tempted to self-pity God always reminds me of how He is in control and that He can use "even me" to help young men and women get to the mission field.

One of those young people has been talking to me for about 2 years. It seemed as if there was a roadblock in the way of his heading to MAF. But a conference call later all was cleared up and he is actually doing his Technical Evaluation this week (that’s the fastest I’ve ever seen it happen, and can only say that it’s DEFINITELY a God thing since it usually takes a minimum of 6 weeks to get a TE scheduled!).

Another was a young man that I’d never met before but have been corresponding with via email for 6 months. The only time I could fit into my schedule was breakfast. The young man is in A&P school which starts at 7 so we got together at 6 to answer all the questions he had.

I could write about each person I met with, but I think you get the idea. Sometimes I get jealous and wish I was 30 years younger so I could go do what these folks are just heading into. But then I remember what one of the Godly men who mentored me along the way used to say: “God’s timing is ALWAYS perfect – not often early but NEVER late!”.

As we go about our daily tasks, let’s all remember that HE is in control and He is always on time.

Brian, for the recruiting team