Just Plane Strong

Just getting back from Florida guys. Such a neat time with amazing people and churches. And guess what, I flew in the emergency exit row. Here's why that's cool. Some of you may remember this story, but it wasn't long after my second spine surgery that I consciously booked the emergency exit row. At that time I needed the ability to extend my hips as much as possible, so what better place on a plane than in the exit row? Well as I got to my seat, I realized that I needed help getting my carry-on in the overhead bin. I'm shaking my head as I type this, but a sweet flight attendant assisted me. Thing is, just as soon as I said thank you, I knew I didn't inspire much confidence from her. With everyone else already in their seats, she asked, "Are you sure you should be sitting in this row?"design 3 Freeze frame. In that moment, my mind traveled back to when Loretta and I first got married. Back then I was impenetrable. I felt like Superman. We had a tiny little apartment on the second floor and we had bought a stackable washer dryer for the unit. We were so proud of it. The only problem was I had nobody to help me get it upstairs. So what did I do? I put it on an upright dolly and then attached my hands to said dolly with my pulling straps, and I proceeded to deadlift it up each step. Strong legs, back, core and heart. Speaking of, Loretta's heart was in her throat, and yes, that day my brains were in my biceps.

Where was I? Oh, yes, the plane. Well, no longer Superman, I knew right away that the flight attendant had a point. And the point was that the emergency row wasn't there to meet my needs, it was there so the needs of others could be met. Of course, back in my 20s and 30s, I could've pulled the door plum off the side of the plane, but alas, I switched seats.

Friends, isn't it something? Our health in so many of life's circumstances isn't about us at all. It's about what we can do for others. I guess that's why as I boarded the plane this week, it felt like the scene in Superman II, when Clark Kent goes back to that diner after regaining his power. When I was asked if I could perform the duties required to help others, I adjusted my glasses and stole Clark's line with a grin..."Yes. I've been working out."

--Jimmy Peña

UPDATE: So grateful for your prayers as I traveled. What are you grateful for today? Let's praise the Lord together.