Plastic Bag Flights

Perhaps you’ve never wanted to fly. I have.

Actually, what I most wanted was to parachute. I think I must have been about six or seven when I learned about parachutes and how they work. Ready to experience the thrill for myself, I found two ready-made chutes (a.k.a. plastic grocery bags) in the kitchen drawer and persuaded my sister to go parachuting with me off the top of our backyard swing set.

Quite honestly, it was a disappointing adventure. No broken bones, but no working chutes either.

Majestic wings

God offers us a greater thrill than parachuting—mounting up with wings as eagles.

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.—Isaiah 40:31

There’s something majestic about this offer. Something so appealing that even though we hate the condition (waiting on the Lord), we all claim the verse. We collect eagles, bookmarks, plaques, and other miscellaneous items that help us visualize the reality of this incredible promise.

Easy wings

But love Isaiah 40:31 as we may, when it actually comes to the time to wait on the Lord, we often go to the kitchen drawer and pull out a different set of wings—easier ones.

And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest. Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. Selah.—Psalm 55:6–7

When the pressures mount and we most need wings, why do we wish for dove’s wings when we could have eagle’s wings? Why do we want to flee when we could soar?

It’s like parachuting off the swing set with a plastic bag when you could be flying cross-country in a jet. A disappointing adventure at best.

Escape or soar?

Can I confess? I struggle with waiting on the Lord. And when I’m weighted with difficulty of any sort, I’m tempted to pull out the ‘ol plastic bag and pray for a speedy escape. I’m all about quick fixes and easy solutions. Sometimes I even pray Psalm 55 and, like David, ask for something as foolish as fleeing to the wilderness. (We have such lofty ambitions when we are self-focused!)

But in those moments, the Lord reminds me of His offer to provide eagle’s wings—to renew my strength and help me soar by riding the currents of the tempest.

And all I have to do is wait on Him.

Why would we reach for wings to escape when we can have wings to soar?

Do you need wings today? Choose the eagle’s wings.

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