The wide-eyed little two-year old stared up at me from my lap as the excitement passed. “Let’s do it again, Daddy!” Part of me, that tiny portion of my brain that still retained its own little kid spirit of adventure, agreed with the sentiment. But a much bigger and older part shouted out (internally, at least), “No! I don’t ever want to feel like that again!” What came out of me in a quieter, shaky voice was, “I don’t think that would be good idea.”
My little family was traveling by air to visit the children’s grandparents in Texas. Most of the flight had gone smoothly, with no problems from the children at all, as well as good conditions for flying. All of a sudden, the “Fasten Seat belts” light had come to life and within moments we were in the worst turbulence I had ever encountered in my limited flying experience. First a violent upward movement, followed by a rapid loss of altitude, then back up again, with the accompanying “losing the stomach” feeling. This happened several times in rapid succession, with a few sideways tosses of the plane thrown in for good measure. Terrified might be too strong a word, but we weren’t relaxed, by any measure. As the plane leveled out and flew smoothly on, we expected the children to be frightened, but were relieved to be greeted by the words from our daughter, almost amused even. We arrived at our destination without any other incidents and were happy to touch down.
I’ve thought of the occasion many times since that day, a lot of years ago. My thoughts are captured, not by the turbulence we experienced; many travelers experience much worse on a regular basis. No, my thoughts are held captive by the words of the sweet curly-headed tot as adults around her were gasping and recovering their equilibrium from what had been a frightening episode. There was no sense of fear, no realization of danger; simply a knowledge that the sensations of the ride had been pleasant and a little exciting. She wanted more of that! I have come to a determination about the sweet girl’s response to the situation. She was in her Daddy’s lap, being held in his strong arms. How could she have come to any other conclusion? What was going to hurt her there? Her Daddy would never allow her to be harmed.
The grown-up perspective is very often a jaded, cynical one. We mature, watching events unfold around us; seeing the horror, the destruction that is possible, and we lose our childlike belief, our faith in Someone who is bigger than we. I’ve seen that. I’ve even felt that. But, I keep thinking about that little girl enjoying the journey, bumps and all, ready for whatever came, as long as her Daddy was there.
Like the little blondie’s thinking, the conclusion is obvious, not only in life, but also in this blog. You don’t need me to carry this any further right now, so I’ll leave you to your own resolution. For me, even though the trip gets bumpy now and then, there are strong arms holding me. “Let’s do it again, Daddy!”
“Let God’s promises shine on your problems.”
(Corrie Ten Boom~Dutch Holocaust survivor~1891-1983)