Devotional: May 24th
You've heard of flying saucers, right? You know, the stuff of UFOs. But have you ever heard of a flying pancake? No, you aren't seeing things in print. I did type, "flying pancake." The flying pancake is a special plane that was built for the government by Vought Aircraft and designed by Charles Zimmerman. The plane was designed to take off and land in a short distance to facilitate its use on carriers.
The V-173 was first built in 1942. Its first flight was on November 23, 1942. The reason it was called the flying pancake is because the plane was designed with a broad flat fuselage some twenty-five feet in width.. In the forties it rose in esteem to the point where Charles Lindbergh even flew it but only after another pilot had walked away from a crash in the V-173.
The problem with the V-173 was that it was a twin propeller airplane and jet technology was a burgeoning field. With the advent of the jet fighter and its quick burst which allowed it to take off from the deck of a carrier, the V-173 became unneeded. The Navy lost interest in the little plane and retired it in 1948 just six years after its maiden flight. It was discovered in a Smithsonian warehouse in Maryland four years ago by a group of Vought Aircraft retirees who wanted to spruce her up.
They move the plane, with some degree of difficulty, to Texas where it is being restored. It will then appear at the Dallas Frontiers of Flight Museum before being returned to the Smithsonian. In short, it is being restored so it can become a museum piece. Though not useful as it was originally intended to be it is a link in the history of flight. Jesus told a parable about a fig tree that did not bear figs, which is why you plant a fig tree.
The owner of the vineyard in which the fig tree was planted was bothered by its lack of figs. "Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, 'Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?' " Luke 13:7 God has planted His kingdom here on earth to bear souls for Him saved through His Son's blood. Is His fig tree bearing figs for Him? "Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away." John 15:2
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