Monday, April 20, 2015



I don't do it often.

But when I do, I really enjoy it.

I feel fortunate that I am not inordinately afraid of flying.  I am able to suspend my imagination, and block out the seemingly impossible physics of getting humans in the air.

My favorite part?


I love that thrill of acceleration, the sensation of being pressed back into my seat.  I love racing down the tarmac.

And then *the* moment…

The plane lifts off the ground and I soar into the sky.


A few weeks ago, I had to travel to the Midwest for some family business. And I was eagerly awaiting the flight.  The day before, I carefully tamped down, crammed full, packed one carry-on piece of luggage.  I was traveling with my brother who did not want to deal with baggage claim.

I complied.

Everything went so smoothly at the airport.  We even found out that we were "pre-screened" for the security check, and breezed right past the long line! (Which was great.  I didn't have to remove anything, nor subject myself to the invasive x-ray machine!!)

A snap!

We boarded the plane, taxied down the runway, and took off.


But, a few short moments later the captain's voice came over the loudspeaker:

"We are flying into an extensive storm front.  Expect some turbulence for the first hour."

I guess I've had good luck flying.  I've never really had a bad flight.  For the most part, my flights have been smooth and uneventful.

So, I admit, this caused a flutter in my heart.  (Flutter?  More like an earthquake!  Though you have to be on the ground to feel an earthquake, just sayin'…)

Well, at least he warned us.

And yes, it was quite turbulent.  I never had to use the airsick bag, but let's just say that it was a close companion.

But feeling queasy and nauseous wasn't the worst part.  The worst part was what the turbulence did in my mind.

Remember me mentioning that ability to "suspend my imagination"?  Well, turbulence has a way of splashing a big dose of reality on you really fast. Trust me, I became very aware of this indisputable fact…I was NOT on the ground anymore.

As if I needed that frightful bit of information confirmed (I didn't…ahem), this airline had a little interactive screen you could play around with.  And yup, right there at my fingertips was the truth:

Altitude: 38,056 feet.

Ground speed:  554 mph.

Outside temperature:  -68 degrees F.

All of a sudden, my illusion of safety and security was invaded by the realities of air flight and the certain knowledge that I was NOT IN CONTROL.

While I was white-knuckling through that first hour, I got to thinking. There had to be some lessons here – (besides the obvious – that flying is not a "natural" state for humans!)

And then, I began to see the many parallels –

Life is kind of like a plane flight.

It can be very exciting.  We fly from one adventure to another, sometimes out of breath, often in awe and wonder at the scenery, and fooled by the illusion that we are in control.

Until we hit turbulence.

And all of a sudden, that sense of safety and security comes crashing down and we are confronted with reality.

Life in a broken world is not a "natural" state – we were made to live differently – and in many ways we are careening through our days totally in danger of falling and crashing.

In so many ways, we are totally at the mercy of the whims of circumstance.

Sometimes life makes me queasy and nauseous.

Sometimes panic threatens to overrun my feelings and invade my thoughts.

Sometimes I want "off the plane."

We've all felt this way before, haven't we?

And yet, as the flight settled down, I started to think about some other things.  Like how the Bible talks about having eagles' wings.

" can you say the LORD does not see your troubles? can you say God ignores your rights?
Have you never heard?
Have you never understood?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of all the earth.
He never grows weak or weary.
No one can measure the depths of his understanding.
He gives power to the weak
and strength to the powerless.
Even youths will become weak and tired,
and young men will fall in exhaustion.
But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint."

(Isaiah 40:27-31, NLT)

Evidently we earth-bound creatures are meant to soar the spiritual heights.

We are not meant to "crash and burn."  We are not to be "grounded" in dismay, discouragement, or despair.  We are meant to rise up beyond our circumstances, to ascend past our feelings, to fly to the heights of God's purposes with strength, His strength.

We cannot do this alone.

When turbulence hit our airplane, I was totally at the mercy of the elements.


Except for the excellent training of the pilot.  Except for his knowledge of flying, far greater than mine.  Except that his hands were firmly on the steering wheel, which is more accurately called a "flight yoke."  (Interesting term, huh?!  Take His yoke upon you...).

Except for his trustworthiness.

It is the same with God.

He knows all about how to live life, for He created it.  He still sits on His throne, and His hands are firmly on each one of us.  Steering us, guiding us, uplifting us, teaching us how to fly with Him.

And yes, He is trustworthy.

Some other verses speaking about eagles:

"For [we] belong to the LORD;
[We are] his special possession.
He found them in a desert land,
in an empty, howling wasteland.
He surrounded them and watched over them;
he guarded them as he would guard his own eyes.
Like an eagle that rouses her chicks
and hovers over her young,
so he spread his wings to take them up
and carried them safely on his pinions."

(Deuteronomy 32:9-11, NLT)

So, because we belong to The Eagle, He alone can help us to fly like eagles.

And even though life makes me a bit (a lot??) queasy and nauseous sometimes, even though I often panic when I remember that I am not in control, even when I am living outside of my comfort zone at the mercy of circumstances, even when I want to get "off the plane"…

Even then, I can trust Him to bring me home.


God does whatever it takes
to help eagles fly...

God removes
the soft coverings
to remind us,
That this life is painful
and full of
And its solution is to
in spiritual realms.

- Dr. Ram Mehta
September 25, 2014

"Is it at your command that the eagle mounts up and makes his nest on high? On the rock he dwells and makes his home, on the rocky crag and stronghold." (Job 39:27-28, ESV)

"'You yourselves have I bore you on eagles' wings, and brought you to Myself.  Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine...'" (Exodus 19:4-5, NASB)

"'...for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings.  And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.  On the day when I act, you will tread upon the wicked as if they were dust under your feet,' says the LORD of Heaven's Armies." 
(Malachi 4:2-3, NLT)

"Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.

Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And forget none of His benefits;
Who pardons all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases;

Who redeems your life from the pit,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;
Who satisfies your years with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle."

(Psalm 103:1-5, NASB)

Do you need the strength of the Lord today to soar like an eagle?

Linked with:


BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


  1. Great analogy about flying, Sharon, and how we can soar even through the turbulence of life :) I'm not a flyer, absolutely terrified of it though will get on a plane if absolutely necessary :) I'm glad you got to your destination and home in one piece and learned a life lesson you could share with us :)


  2. Sharon, Isn't odd that one moment we can feel all trusting and secure, and then we hit a speed bump - or air bump - and suddenly we are reminded that we are NOT in control of much of anything? Thankfully we know WHO is in control.
    P.S. I also love take off, and enjoy flying - mostly. :) Good post. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Your writing is so interesting! I love your analogy with the flying. Sometimes God has to remind us that we are not in control, doesn't He? I'm thankful that He is always in control and I can trust Him. I'm visiting from the #SmallWonderLinkup.

  4. Glad you made it safely! I love your metaphors. Thanks for sharing! Visiting from The Beauty in His Grip

  5. Bless you Sharon ... I depend on the strength of the Lord daily whether soaring like the eagles or just scratching like the chickens ... however I love your "takeoff" and "landing" throughout this "flight" blog post. I read this earlier this morning on the BIG screen but had to wait until now to comment via my laptop. Every descriptive word had me experiencing this flight right along with you Sharon. Fortunately, I have not had "turbulence" enough to make me air sick yet and pray that I won't. I'm so glad that you were safely under His wings to the Midwest and made it back home OK by His grace. I love this flying analogy along with the 'control' connection and my favorite scripture from Isaiah! Often I try to fly under the radar "spiritually" yet trust confidently in my Pilot. He can take the wheel ("flight yoke") any time and needs to often ... {thank you for sharing the correct term} ... I enjoy knowing that our "yoke" in flight is in His hands and control, especially when thinking of Matthew 11:30 ... easy, breezy and light flight.

    After reading this first thing today, I then listened to 2 videos of a missionary kidnapped in the Philippines in 2001(her spouse died) by rebel terrorist group, who has written 2 books: "In the Presence of My Enemies" and interestingly, the other was "To Fly Again" ... so I guess God is continuing this "Taking Flight" theme as I venture into a new week and ponder your well written words once again both here and in my blog comments (which were so enriching and I really wanted to reply to many insights you shared with me) - you are such a blessing and inspiration to my weary soul, I actually "take flight" when I read your thoughts!
    But as for me, now ... I am waiting on the 'runway' of life (tarmac) ... not even circling above for a clear landing yet ... planning future flight(s) or dreading it, wondering if it will be a clear sailing above the clouds and storms or if I will still have to face "turbulence" like you ... Thankful, ever so very thankful, that He is in control and so trustworthy to care for us through everything.

    Love you Sharon ... thanks for clearing any clouds and a safe landing as always,

  6. Love this! I fly quite a bit and I am just like you...I love take-off! I have had a few turbulent flights too, my last one to WAshington a few weeks ago was quite nerve-wracking. But so thankful the Pilot is in control of my life, every single day. Blessings to you, I am always inspired here. ♥

  7. We hold onto such a delusion of control, don't we Sharon. Even through rough air as we scramble to feel better and predict the outcomes. I, too, am working through the thoughts of letting go and letting God. Thank you for these words and for linking at Small Wonder.

  8. Oh, my dear friend! I could SO relate to so much of what you said here. I couldn't help but think of how God was holding that pilot...and the palm of His loving hands, even during the turbulence you experienced. A God Who is that big...Who can hold that big, old plane, along with all of its passengers....and all of the other planes that were flying at that same time...and the whole universe with all its contents...just to think, THIS is the God we serve! He is that big, and, yet He sees the smallest details of our everyday lives. I am so sorry you had to go through this, but loved the precious thoughts He gave you and am so thankful you shared them here. He always has a reason for allowing us to go through the things we do. You are such a dear, precious encouragement to me. Love and appreciate you so much!

  9. This was such a great read, I'm so glad you linked it up to a Grateful Heart! I was never a fan of flying and while I'm still not a "fan" per se, I'm able to sit in a window seat without trying to claw my way to the aisle ;) I just flew to Italy and Paris and if that doesn't break you of a fear of flying, I don't know what will! They even had a camera/screens so that you could watch the take off and landing - I couldn't bring myself to do it... maybe one of these days! ;)

  10. OK, i just wrote a comment here, and then I was redirected to my stupid google sign in, and then my comment appears to have dis appeared. I always hate that because I'm afraid it's flying about in cyber space with some of that turbulence stuff and will land after I post another comment. Then, I will look a little goofy for saying the same thing but sorta different twice.

    Follow that line of reasoning?

    Probably not.

    I, however, followed your line very well. I loved the part about the fact that we are promised to be given eagle's wings being an indication that we are actually INTENDED to sour the spiritual heights. I admit that sometimes (well, lately...) I tend to think I've been promised ostrich feathers instead. Apparently that's the case since what ought to be a soaring flight is far too much a" hide your head and run really fast" walk of faith.

    Why? Well, clearly it is for the same reason that I am afraid to physically fly: I have a lack of trust. I'm convinced that my flight is the one in ten thousand designed to crash and burn. Convicting.

    This was an excellent post. (And I'm so glad you did NOT crash and burn.)

    BTW, if another comment randomly lands here, would you please delete it so I don't look goofy?

  11. I. DO. NOT. LIKE. FLYING. I hate the take off and landing. Does a number on my stomach. I prefer to drive or I took the train once. Now that was cool! But I also understand your thoughts of soaring. Is.40:31 is a go to verse for needing His strength.

  12. This is such a good one, Sharon, because life really does feel like a plane flight. There are times when we are up high, soaring because life is going so smoothly. But then we hit turbulence and more often then not, our mind starts racing to make things even worse. So thankful, though, that we have an amazing God who truly knows what He has planned for us and who has our lives in His hands! Oh, how I need to trust Him even more to be the pilot of my life, knowing that He has everything in control and He will bring me home.

    Thank you for this great encouragement, Sharon! God bless you!

  13. Air travel is an adventure just like life! That turbulence reminds me He's in control at all times and when it gets scary, Jesus is a great one to run to for stability. Soaring with you on eagle's wings!

  14. Hi Sharon! I don't think there are many people who can't relate to your airplane story. Turbulence in the sky terrifies me. I've only had a few flights that made me sweat, but that was enough.

    What a great metaphor for the bumpy, scary patches in life too. I'm sure the pilot knows that we'll all be fine. I just don't have his wisdom or experience. It's the same with me and God. When I'm in the middle of the desert, I am nervous and sweaty. But He has good plans for me! (I just wish I knew what they were...)
    Wonderful to be here as always my spiritual friend :)

  15. As always, you are right on with your analogy, Sharon. I like to fly as well and we did just recently when we went to FL to visit family. It really is hard to describe how one feels who actually enjoys flying but yet there is still that reminder that there is nothing bewteen you and the ground...and how is this even possible? You have definitely put everything into perspective...we need to trust God whether or not we are boarding a plane or just living our lives...bumps and all...great post!

  16. I think my parents prepared me for flying by taking us to the SF. play-land park where we rode the Farris wheel and then the roller coaster. One of our Bible teachers reminded us that prior to the stormy sea, Jesus said, "Let us go over to the other side." He knew ahead of time that they would arrive safely. Our teacher suggested that we make a declaration as we enter an airplane, and say those words under our breath (as a prayer and confession) I loved your illustrations of flying and life in general. Yes at times we are going along rather smoothly then all of a sudden we are hit with turbulence. How wonderful to understand that God is the one in control and he will safely take us to our destination. As always a GREAT Post. Thank you for sharing with us here at Tell me a True Story. Hope your brother was Okay too.

  17. The wheels leaving the ground is my very favorite moment of flying too, Sharon! Love that. My husband always watches me at that point. ha. Turbulence? Not a fan. But yes, many analogies of life right there. Thanks for sharing faith through it all.

  18. I really enjoyed your analogies. I'd never thought of so many parallels between air travel and our pilgrimage through earthly life!
    "I am NOT in control." and that isn't a bad thing, since I know Who is.
    --Jan (visiting from SDG)

  19. Sharon, I am not a writer, but I wish I was because I would like to express how much your thoughts mean to me. I all in turmoil here, and when I read this I found myself relaxing...I'm going to read through the verses again before I go to bed. Thank you...

  20. Great post, Sharon. I am not a fan of flying for the reasons you mentioned......take off and no control. 😊. When I'm feeling a turmoil that involves waiting, feeling out of control, and reminds me of when we flew into the Philippine islands at Clark Air Force base. They reverse engines in the air.....a whole lot of shaking going on befoe landing! Love the soar on wings verse. A favorite verse.

  21. I always love your words. <3 Visiting from Woman to Woman's Word Filled Wednesday Linkup.

  22. Wow! Great post, Sharon! I am preparing to take my first flight on my own (minus the hubby and/or family!) next week and have, for the most part, been like you -having had great uneventful flights. Sure - a little turbulence... but nothing much! This was a great reminder and - if I do have a rougher flight - will come back to mind, I am sure! Also - I am attempting to only have my carry-on bag as well! I don't want to have to check bags and all of that, but I am always an over packer! Here's hoping I can cram it all in one tiny bag!

  23. Interestingly, I was just recently having a conversation with my boss on how I have never experienced much turbulence when flying. And I'm not the greatest with flying so this is a good thing. But, as always, you give us words to take to heart. I so appreciate you, Sharon. Much love. xoxo

  24. You really nailed this one. I've been struggling lately with my emotions and not wanting to let God in to heal some wounds because I didn't want to give up my little shield and exchange it for His big one (that offers so much more protection). I wanted to be able to control the healing process (i.e. not start it), but I am so glad that He is faithful to keep flying even when I am ready to deplane.

  25. Life IS like a plane flight. Always an adventure, that's for sure! Thanks for linking up at #ThreeWordWednesday.

  26. Hi Sharon, loved your post. Flying is not my favourite thing to do either. I do so agree with you though, that we as Christians don't fly spiritually the way we should. We don't realize our ability in Christ to do so. I know I spiritually battle to take-off often. Great post, great encouragement
    God bless

  27. I have never been in an airplane. (My husband prefers to drive.) I am glad that God gave you comfort during the first hour of your flight. Isaiah 40:28-31 is one of my favorite scriptures in the Bible. I hope you have a lovely day!

  28. What a great analogy! I fly quite a bit and flying in the southwest desert in the summer time is a true test of the strength of a stomach! I never fly without saying a prayer on the ground first. In the end all things, the plane, our souls, and this universe sits in the palm of His hand.

  29. Awesome, sweet Sharon. I have been there, done that-- I have never been super scared about flying, but sometimes when going on a long trip by myself (aka, senior year of college flying all the way from KS to China-- BY MYSELF) I get a bit sweaty.

    Now that I am have my faith in a more solid, rooted place in my heart, I am able to enjoy the flight more. And plus I have to fly with a toddler, so that takes up most of my attention. She is smearing play-doh all over the seat and throwing crackers in the hair of the person in front of us. I don't have time to be afraid :-)

  30. I have a love/hate relationship with flying. Glad you had a safe landing after all the fear. It's good to know God holds those steel birds in the palm of his hand just like everything else.

  31. What a well written thought provoking post, especially since I will be taking a flight within the month - I think the 5th in my life and I will try to think of your enthusiasm not the fact that my ears plug for the next three days as Fellow passengers look at me as I chew gum like a cow trying to pop them lol. Found from Make my Saturday's Sweet.

  32. I ALWAYS KNOW--no matter what I'm going through each week, the Lord gives YOU the word I need to hear. To lift me. To make me soar. This is so ON for what I've been through the past two weeks. Stuff I can't control. Settling down somewhat--but not out of the woods yet. Thank you for these scriptures and this vision of the eagle. It is precious to me--and easy to forget when you're white knuckling it. Struggling with panic attacks and stress. Seeking to soar--and looking forward to our May 9th women's day seminar when the topic is--you guessed it--On Eagles' Wings. Isaiah 40. Yep.

    Bless you, friend!

  33. I loved flying until a turbulent flight "grounded" me for a time. Finally got over my fear and I'm flying again. I can't say I love it, but it gets me from here to there. I love your analogy. Yes, I'm the same I want smooth flights and a smooth life. Great lesson on trust. Blessings to you.

  34. Amazing how eagles learn how to fly. Mother eagle pushes them down the edge and just when they thought they'll fall to the ground and die, feeling abandoned, betrayed and unloved, Father eagle swoops down and catches them, brings them back up to safety. The process repeats until they finally learn to spread their wings to fly.

    I think God does the same to us. He teaches us how to have faith in Him that He knows what He's doing and the falling is for our good. Once we learn how to fly, we know it's all worth it. :)

    Happy weekend!

  35. God has us. He can lift us. He protects us. He guards us. Thank you for your inspiring words that I am under his protective covering! Cheering you on from the #RaRalinkup on Purposeful Faith.

  36. My sister died suddenly last weekend. It came as a shock and I needed to get back up and fly like an eagle. Funny thing, my dgt and I went for a walk and spotted a young eagle near our home. They don't live here so that was amazing. He does give us the strength and courage and brave to always rise above the sad and frighting and painful.

  37. I, too, spend a lot of time wondering how in the world a machine that big and that heavy can get off the ground and stay aloft! It's practically a miracle, I tell you. And -68? Are you serious?

    I'm so glad we can be grounded even in the air. That Someone even higher than a trained pilot is ultimately in control.

    These are great words today, friend! Thanks for sharing them with the Still Saturday community.

  38. One of our young mom friends 10 week old twins went to be with JESUS yesterday! Reading this reminds me to keep remembering God is coverings er with his mighty wings and carrying her with those stron feathers. A year of many ups and downs has gone before this and she is broken to the core. I ask you all to pray for Nikki and her husband, other 5 children, and the precious grandparents in the days ahead. I am new reader to your blog. It hit me so strong as words For me to share. Very familiar passages that I was looking for.

  39. Thank you so much Sharon for being so open and honest with us. Thank you also for sharing this great post at Good Morning Mondays, you are such an encouragement to us. There have been times in our life where the turbulence is just awful, but God is always there for us, carrying us through. Thank you for the reminder. Blessings

  40. I'm your neighbour at Give me Grace. I really like this analogy. You're right - turbulence shatters the illusion of control, and really reminds us of who we are and who is in control.

  41. You have an amazing way of weaving stories! I love your posts and it was a great encouragement today! Thank you for sharing at Waiting on...Wednesday! I hope to see you back this week!


  42. I need His grace daily and I need His strength and I do need Him to soar like that eagle! You have shared one of my favorite Scriptures! Our youngest son is a runner and often I remind him although we can become physically tired we should try to stay spiritually on target with the Lord. I know when I am most discouraged He is always there to pick me up. I am very happy I stopped by your blog. I am catching up with Charlotte and Spiritual Sunday. Thank you and enjoy a wonderful week.

  43. Beautiful analogy, Sharon! May we trust Him to set our feet in high places and wait on Him to let us soar on eagles' wings! Linked up with you at Teaching What is Good -- hope you'll stop by Saved by Grace for a visit!
    God bless,


"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

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