Purpose Driven: Applying Faith in This Complex World
by Kelly James Martin
URLink Print and Media

"Through the miracle of birth we were placed in this world, you and me, and given a free will."

The son of a father who served in the military in World War II and a mother who immigrated to the U.S. from Germany after surviving the war there, Martin learned to persevere and face all situations with grit and faith. Early on, he conceived a desire to become a pilot, even though accomplishing that goal with a four-year degree would present many barriers. He worked as a certified flight instructor for thirty-five years and describes in close, technical detail the places and situations his flying led him to, including a trip around the world. He married and had two sons, making gradual progress up the ladder of success in his profession, often having to work away from home. Personal problems slowly sapped his energies and led to a long, agonizing legal battle and bouts of deep depression. Through it all, he maintained a strong Christian faith, bolstered by family and church, concluding that helping others is a powerful means of saving ourselves.

Martin has constructed a remarkable metaphorical scenario alongside the narrative of his life, depicting an anonymous wartime pilot making split-second decisions, sometimes resulting in a sense of victory and, at least once, leading to a perilous parachute bailout into open waters. These short scenes deftly parallel the trials and triumphs that Martin himself faced, not only in the air but also on the ground as he struggled with a disturbing, unpredictable relationship. He includes photos of family and some of the unusual aircraft he was fortunate to have flown in. He believes that aircraft instructors, such as he was, are an undersung group who risk a great deal to accomplish a task necessary for national security. Martin’s frank, intelligent chronicle will fascinate anyone with airborne ambitions and serve as inspiration, too, for dedicated people of faith.

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