One Ordinary Life—Extraordinary Grace

by Mark J. Schreiber


Book Details


One mile out. The F-14 Tomcat lines up for a carrier landing. Gear down. Flaps down. Tailhook down. The CCA (Carrier Controlled Approach) controller sees the Tomcat on his radar scope and radios pilot, “On glidepath. On centerline. One mile. Call the ball!” The LSO (Landing Signal Officer) on the aft port side of the ship, a veteran pilot with sharp eagle-like eyesight, guides the Tomcat down the optical glide slope to the flight deck. The Light Landing Device, nicknamed, “meatball,” a series of parallel reference lights stationed on the port side of the flight deck, signals to the pilot if he is too high, too low or off center line.

The pilot “calls the ball.” His F-14 engines are whining at 150 mph, nose elevated, elevators flapping. The LSO holds in his hand the “pickle switch” which lights up the meatball instantly signaling a wave-off to the pilot if the LSO is dissatisfied with the approach. The Tomcat threads the needle, hits the deck at full power, tailhook down and traps the third wire. Perfect.

Who can but stand in amazement at the precision, professionalism, courage and skill it takes to accomplish such a dramatic feat of nautical and aeronautical maneuvering at sea?

Flight deck carrier operations—launch, recovery, wave-off, bolter, trapped—is the lens I offer to view, reframe and seize new meaning from the unfolding events of your ordinary life viewed from the flight deck of God’s extraordinary grace.

Your life-script is divinely written, unique, engineered and executed by God. It began the day you were baptized into Christ Jesus. God’s script is powerful and extraordinary. God’s script is healing and freedom. God’s script is simply wonderful. Seek and you will find.

Launch our faith, dear God!


About the Author

Mark J. Schreiber

Mark J. Schreiber (DMin, PhD), Lutheran minister (emeritus), has faithfully pastored three vibrant congregations since ordination (1977). Schreiber also served God and country as a Navy Chaplain (1980-2005) followed by the call to serve as the endorsing agent for all military chaplains of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod from 2004 to 2014. Dr. Schreiber, now retired, lives in Florida with Connie his wife of 46 years, three married daughters and six grandchildren.

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