William Andrew Dillard
Parson to Person

Several decades ago, as a young, inexperienced traveler, a visit to foreign mission fields underscored danger in assuming the schedules of others to be dependable.
The trip to Costa Rica included a stop in Mexico City. It was a blessed time which demands a story within itself. But the point is that the time for departure from Mexico City was assumed to be dependable. An early arrival at the airport allowed some leisure time, and then an early check-in put me directly on the airplane. As I was being seated, the plane started to move. I exclaimed, “but this plane is not scheduled to leave for another 30 minutes. The stewardess reply was, “It is O.K. everyone is here so let’s go!” Huh! I was glad to be on the plane early.
Then when departing San Jose, Missionary Ward was also traveling back to the States, so we went together.
At the airport, we were told all seats were taken, and I was not included. Under protest that I had an international ticket that scheduled my travel on this flight, I was told a 24 hour early check-in was required. So, it appeared that I would be left behind, awaiting another flight, perhaps the next day. I had assumed that my placement was secure by the scheduling of others.
Fortunately, Gene Ray Ward intervened on my behalf, and not knowing Spanish, I do not know for sure just what all went on, but because of his intervention, I was allowed to travel on that flight by using a stewardess jump-seat. I was, and am, grateful for the help, and those incidents made me a much wiser traveler. It truly is dangerous to assume.
That danger is exponentially underscored in the world of spiritual things. So many guilty of assuming that others are right will face a rude and disastrous awakening when they find out that baptism, church membership, good works, and their dependence on the misinformation of others have not saved them. Paul said, “I know Whom I have believed…” Personal relationship with Christ Jesus cannot be replaced, or substituted in any way. Assumptions may be worked around in mundane things, but not in the eternal welfare of the soul!

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