Today is Ascension Day – when we recall Jesus’ leaving this earth’s surface to be drawn into the Heavens. It’s a moment of separation and a moment of promise.
In recent days we have heard much talk about the Boeing 767 making its way around the West Coast of Ireland from its home in Shannon, Co. Clare to its new home in Enniscrone, Co. Sligo. The story has captured people’s imaginations and, quite literally, thousands of people watched its journey.
The story had its genesis in the mind of a local man, David McGowan, who saw the plane being transformed from a parked and empty shell to become a home where people could camp, enjoy Co. Sligo and explore the West of Ireland. The idea took root, form and shape and is well on the way now to being realised.
As the plane made its way along the West Coast, carried on a barge brought in from Southampton the thing that struck me most was the “clipped” wings. The plane could never fly again. I imagine its engines too have been decommissioned but even if they’re not, without wings, there’s no more flying for #planesailing or #767Enniscrone as it became known on Twitter.
That image of wings sits well with today’s Feast Day. Wings of prayer. Wings of Old and New Testament, wings of Faith that allow us rise above our doubts and darkness to see what may have become blurred and find what may have been lost.
As the plane made its final journey into Enniscrone last night, there was a waiting involved – waiting for the “high tide” that would allow the plane be “beached”. I’ve no doubt there was gratitude for that high tide and you’d like to think David and all there, found time to say “thanks be to God” for the wonders of nature and the stirrings of the sea. That gratitude is at the heart of all we are meant to be about in life.
So, the question of the day, for me anyway, looks to gratitude and to those for whom we must be grateful. People and situations, God and Faith that is the “wind beneath our wings” and allows us soar above our doubts, worries and pains to find peace for the moment and strength for the journey.
Gratitude for wings unclipped … gratitude for the wind beneath them …. gratitude for stories that can still capture our imagination. Gratitude for Jesus’ ministry on Earth, his Ascension and promise to send us, as he has done, the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit who ensures good ideas become lived reality …..
and the song to go with it ….