Image of European swift by Kev from Pixabay

What is the ultimate flying machine?

The Concorde? A high-tech fighter jet?

I’d suggest to you that the holder of this title belongs to the common swift.

The swift holds the record for the fastest confirmed level flight of any bird: 111.5 km/h (69.3 mph). (Birds like falcons can fly faster, but only when diving down through the air to catch prey.)

Swifts also spend most of their lives on the wing, landing only to nest. Some individuals can spend up to ten months in continuous flight. In a single year a common swift can cover at least 200,000 km. No other bird spends as much of its life in the sky.

They are truly astonishing creatures.

A funny thing about swifts, though: they don’t do very well on the ground.

Their small, weak legs, which are placed far back on their bodies, are really only good for clinging to vertical surfaces like cliffs. They never voluntarily settle on the ground, where they’d be vulnerable to predation. Although swifts are capable of taking flight from level ground, they prefer to “fall” into the air from a high point.

Simply put, swifts were meant to soar.

And so were you.

But oftentimes there are things inhibiting our flight…

Sometimes we remain stuck in a birdcage of guilt over our sins, when if we’ve confessed them to God and have repented, we can trust that He’s forgiven us.

“There’s a bright blue sky of forgiveness and grace for demoralized, defeated souls. The air space is unlimited and free. Freedom is what God wants for us.” (“Beautiful People Don’t Just Happen” by Scott Sauls, 2022)

Your sins and past mistakes don’t define you. Realize that God’s grace is greater than the worst thing you’ve done.

See yourself as God does: forgiven. When He looks at you now, He sees the image of His Son, Jesus. This is the most freeing thought a human can have.

So get your wings back and step into the freedom that Jesus has made available to you through His atoning sacrifice on the Cross.

Image by Flash Alexander from Pixabay

Like the swifts, we have weak legs. But we were never meant to try to stand in our own feeble strength anyway. We were meant to rely on God’s strength, and to simply “fall” into His supporting, loving arms.

Often in the Old Testament, God is referred to using the Hebrew word “ruach,” which means breath, spirit, or wind.

Allow God to be the wind beneath your wings.

Take flight, and soar!

“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 40:31

© 2022 Lori J. Cartmell. All rights reserved.

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