Ever have a moment that stops you in your tracks?
A moment when - out of nowhere - a teachable moment smacks you over the head?
I did at the start of a family vacation last summer.
We were on a plane to Iowa to visit family, and I noticed a little boy across the aisle. He looked about 5 years old and was wearing a t-shirt several times too big for him. From his wide-eyed expression, I wondered if it was his first time on a plane.
He got more and more excited as we prepared for takeoff, asking incredulously, "Are we going to go even faster than THIS?" as we slowly taxied. Then, as the plane accelerated down the runway he loudly exclaimed, "YEAH! We're almost in the clouds!!"
We were most certainly still bumping down the runway, but I was so struck by his vision for being up in the air - it was so real he could almost taste it!
I know not all of my readers are people of faith - but, I sensed that which I call God nudging me to learn from this boy. At that time I was weeks away from the final test that would determine if I would graduate from my coach training on time. The distance between me and my coaching certification was rapidly decreasing and I was almost in flight.
Yet I FELT very much earthbound. I had recently gotten feedback that my coaching was technically excellent but "mechanical". Ouch. Worse, I could see what my trainer meant, but I didn't know how to become more natural.
Yet through this excited little boy, God invited me to focus less on the frustration of my earthbounded-ness and more on how great it was going to be to be up in the clouds!
I was on the right track. (And, with practice, I was able to coach naturally even under the time constraint of our final test and graduate on time!)
Is there any area of your life where you are discouraged about not having “taken off”?
Maybe you feel behind in your career. You look around at your peers and their sophisticated-sounding job titles. How can you possibly catch up?
Maybe you feel behind in being an adult. Sure, you've managed to keep your kids alive, but their diet of 99% carbs, the state of the living room, and the fact that you've constantly running late is not a great feeling. Shouldn't you have the hang of this by now?
There is an incredible difference between being on the ground and being in the air. And honestly, my first instinct was to laugh at the boy who thought we were almost in the clouds when I could feel the bumps of the pavement beneath us. But in a way, he was right! Within about ten minutes we really were flying alongside the clouds.
Zoom out and look at yourself from a higher perspective. Could it be you are on the runway now? Maybe you’re still at the gate. Maybe you’re taxiing. Or maybe you’re positioned to take flight sooner than you know.
My prayer for myself: God, help me to know that my earthbounded-ness does not mean I will always be stuck on the ground. Help me to focus on joy of where I’m going, not get down on myself about where I am. Increase my anticipation and joy about “being in the clouds”, and help me to know that with Your help I can get there.