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Group 1 Boarding  

In any given week, approximately 79 credit card offers find their way to our mailbox.  So awhile back, I caved in to an invitation from American Airlines to receive their Platinum Select card.   In addition to one free checked bag for my wife and me, the big pay-off this card dangled was Group 1 boarding status. 

Diana and I were excited to try out these new perks, standing in line at O’hare airport. Our suitcases were checked in free, just as advertised.  The boarding process, however, was another story.  

Turns out Platinum Select is not nearly as exclusive a class as they made it sound. Before those of us in Group 1 were allowed to board, we watched as wave after wave of other people glided by.  It began with First Class and active duty U. S. Military. Next was the Executive Platinum group, followed by the One World Emerald group.

Still grounded...

Surely it was now our turn to board next, right?  Nope.  We watched as the Platinum Pro, Platinum and One World Sapphire folks headed down the ramp. 

Our turn now, yes?  No.  Still grounded.  The parade of the privileged continued with the gate attendant’s invitation for Gold and One World Ruby members to board. 

Still others who leapfrogged over those of us with “Group 1” status: Alaska Airlines MVP members, AirPass, Citi/Aadvantage Executive card members.  Oh, and there was one last group: anyone who purchased priority boarding!          


American Airlines has since restructured their boarding process and those zillions of boarding classes are now given a number.  The Group 1 status I was so proud of has been demoted to Group 5.  So much for perks.

However confusing (not to mention misleading) the American Airlines boarding circus may have been, when it comes to eternity, the categories are hauntingly simple.  Scripture says there are only two classes of travelers: those who are headed straight for heaven and those who are headed straight for hell.  That’s it.

In Matthew 25:46, Jesus plainly tells us, “These (anyone who has rejected Christ) will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous (those made righteous by receiving Christ) into eternal life.”

That you have an eternal soul is a settled fact.  The only question is where you will spend your eternity.  Now is the time to get this issue settled.  Today.  The Word of God urges you in 2 Corinthians 6:2, “I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor.  Now is the day of salvation.”

Heaven or hell.  Sounds strange, but it really is a choice—yours.  So…what’s your choice? 


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Jon GaugerJon Gauger

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