Fly in V-Formation

Fly in V-Formation

As a child growing up in East Texas, I remember lying in bed at night listening to geese fly south for the winter. Occasionally during the day, I would hear their honking, look up and see that familiar V-Formation. Exactly why do geese fly in a V? Don’t tell me because it’s too hard to fly in an S! That’s an old joke even for you!

Scientists have determined that the V-Formation geese use when migrating serves two important purposes. First, it conserves their energy. Each bird flies slightly above the bird in front of him, resulting in a reduction of wind resistance. The birds take turns being in the front, falling back when they get tired. In this way, the geese can glide more often and fly for a longer period of time before they must stop and rest.

The second benefit to the V-Formation is that it is easier to keep track of every bird in the group. Flying in V-Formation may even assist with communication and coordination within the group. Fighter pilots often use this formation for the same reasons.

Migration is a long treacherous journey which requires working together, sharing the burden, and looking out for each other. It’s what geese must do to survive. A healthy flock will add young geese to their ranks every year. If not, the flock will eventually die, and their voice will no longer be heard across our skies.

God’s design in creation often points us to His plan for our lives as individuals and as His Church. For one thing, God never intended man to fly solo. He created us for community. We need the support of others, and we need to be in position to help someone else, because we all grow tired and weary. “If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up” (Eccl. 4:10). When we try to do this Christian life alone, it’s easier to fall out of sight. Even a lone sheep doing his own thing becomes easy prey for the prowling wolf.

In the same way, those in ministry need each other. Flying solo can be dangerous to your health. Fly in V-Formation with others. Commit to the journey together. Learn and receive help from others, and you in turn help others. There are always those stronger and weaker around us. Be what God created you to be, and do what God created you to do, but do it with others who have the same goal and destination—heaven.

God help a leader who has no leader and those who follow him or her! Understand this: No one is indispensable. Geese will continue to fly in V-Formation, and the Church will continue to exist until Jesus returns. “Even the stork in the sky knows her appointed seasons, and the dove, the swift and the thrush observe the time of their migration. But my people do not know the requirements of the Lord” (Jer. 8:7).

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands” (Psalm 19:1).