I’ll Fly Away … (OK Not Really)
“I wish I had wings like a dove, so I could fly far away and be at peace” (Ps. 55:6). I needed to read and own this particular verse from the Psalms. I specifically needed it this morning. It is not that my life lacks peace. My issues are very different than the Psalmist who first wrote this verse. But the beauty of the Psalms is the richness. The original singer could lift his voice to God in the face of betrayal (Ps. 55:12-13). The words of prayer he spoke on that occasion for the most part fit my circumstances though I am miles and centuries removed from him.
I do, sometimes, wish I had wings to fly. No, I am not going anywhere or thinking about going anywhere. But, deep in me is a longing to see God in ways I cannot right now. I think if I could soar through the clouds like Superman or through space like a comet, I could get a bit more of God – who God is; what God is. If I could just see as God sees, maybe I could feel God in me.
Yes, pastors muse in this way. Yes, pastors are hit with doubts or anxieties or whatever forms of malaise settle on the human soul. I certainly am not depressed. Nor am I restless. I fear for me it is ennui. Maybe it is that for you or something else. A single session of intense prayer and Bible reading maybe not shake you away or shower you with healing. Life is a journey, a journey best taken in step with God, hand-in-hand with God. But even when we live the “with God life,” it is not always rosy, always exciting, always peaceful. Even with God, the disciples found themselves in storms at sea.
I don’t know where you are in our spiritual journey as spring turns to summer. To be honest, I am not completely sure where I am. (Yes, pastors sometimes find themselves uncertain too). But I am glad of this: “God can be trusted day after day” (Psalm 52:1). In my uncertain moments, I will along with the Psalmist say to God, “Listen to my prayer and hear what I say.” As I do that, I will find ways to shut my own mouth, block out the outside noise, quiet my inner thoughts, and listen to what God has to say. I don’t know what will come of those listening and talking sessions, those conversations we call “prayer.” I don’t know what will come of it. But I believe it is a prelude to flight, an ascent of my spirit to the farthest boundaries of the world. I believe God will take me there because that is who God is and what God does.