The Gift of Flight
By Timothy W. Tron
[Disclaimer] – While I don’t discredit dreams, for they are mentioned in scripture, I do look at the following story with a bit of humor and reflection. We can sometimes learn about ourselves in dreams or find warnings of impending trouble, as was the case in this one. Also, keep in mind, I’m blessed to be able to recall some of the events in my dreams; be they good or bad. I’m not bragging, for we all dream at some point in time, but just thankful God gives us such abilities. So, take what you will from the following passage and hopefully, it will lift your spirits (yes, the pun is intentional).
Lying upon the grass by the pond, I watched overhead as a Turkey Buzzard soared upon thermals high above where my family was fishing. My eyes followed the bird of opportunity, its wings motionless as the black image carved out arcs in an invisible pattern in the cloudless blue sky. The bird’s path began to straighten, and then, as if by chance, at a much higher altitude, the smaller, barely visible ghost-like image of a passenger jet, passed over the carrion. As one of the most improbable intersections had just occurred, my eye then began to follow the plane. Behind in its wake, the air turbulence created the contrail, like the dust rising from behind the cars that would travel down the gravel road that led to my maternal grandparent’s home. The wind would eventually carry it away, and as it drifted off, so did my mind, returning to the images of my own flight the night before.
There we were in my dream, being held captive in some type of holding area. It wasn’t something that was an apparent prison, but rather, an enclosure that one might construe as a source of protection from the outside. From within, there were no alarms raised since nobody was trying to leave. The massive front gates were shut tight. Since our arrival, they had remained closed. Not until now did it impress upon me that they hadn’t been opened, nor had anyone questioned why they were not opened, if not occasionally. Something seemed peculiar about it all.
It wasn’t until something or someone impressed upon me a reason to go beyond the confines of our fortress that troubles began to arise. For me, it wasn’t a problem because of my gift of flight. When the authorities weren’t looking, I took off and easily cleared the walls of the mighty bulwarks. Later, when I returned, those in charge weren’t definitely upset with what I had done. My disregard for their lockdown had created a buzz among the others. Like a thread of hope, the word began to spread that we might be able to leave. Little did most realize, they had not been offered the opportunity, but instead, I had taken it upon my own accord. Fearing that my example would spread dissemination amongst the population, they raised the heights of the walls overnight.
The next day, it was nearly noon before the sunlight began to flow over the new, improved fortress walls. Like magic, overnight, the height of the walls had been doubled. Once more, the impetus for my reason to leave yet unknown to me now, I flew above and beyond the walls of the compound. Once again, I returned to find the masters of our realm visibly disturbed. The rumors now were rampant. A fevered pitch of enthusiasm to open the gates of the mighty bastion was beginning to rumble through the population. A tide of eagerness was matched with the officials making a public proclamation of doom should anyone leave; it was not safe to go – for their own safety, they must remain.
The statement went against what others had passed from person to person about my trips beyond. I had returned safely and without harm. What was there to fear? Now, fearing for my own safety, my friends encouraged me to leave for good. They knew that I would become a focus of the ruling elite’s wrath. What initially began as a curious endeavor had now grown into an all-out rebellion. That night, as the night before, improvements were made to the fortress. This time, they would stop me at all costs.
The next morning, early before the sun had even begun to warm the outer walls of the bastion of gloom, I was up preparing to leave. A chubby young lad approached me and begged me to take him with me. He pleaded that he was afraid to stay any longer. He had heard about there being lands beyond the walls of the fortress where we could live. I conveyed to him that it was not possible. Sadly, I had not yet mastered flight to the point that I could carry someone with me, let alone a child of his girth. However, in my despair, I promised him that I would return with help. He smiled and lowered his head as if to cry. My heart was aching as my feet left the ground. He sulked off into the crowd that had gathered to bid me farewell.
As my altitude increase, the maze of bulwarks began to tighten until I reached a point where the passage to the sky above had narrowed. There above me were cables stretched from one insulator to another, making a series of deadly parallel lines. They had covered the entire top of the compound with high voltage electric power lines.
This was the ultimate test of my flying ability.
The cables were engineered such that they could only be so close due to the arcing from one to another. Should anything pass to close to one of the wires, the path of continuity would be created, and the surge of electricity would instantly fry the particle or person, as in my case. Looking back, the throng of well-wishers were now being broken up by the armed guards that had begun to move from a position of protection to that of prosecution. There was no turning back. It was now or never.
It is at this point that I must share how flying is achieved in my dream world.
There are no wings, there are no propellers. It is merely a feeling of willing your spirit to rise. This feeling becomes so strong that it can literally lift your body with it. Through the years of dream flight, my ability has progressed from the most horrible, to the latest, the most agile. The feeling after awakening from a “flying” dream nowadays is always the same, exhilarating. If it were possible to share, believe me, I would gladly do so.
However, waking up after such a dream hasn’t always been such a blissful occasion.
In my early years, my dreams were those of falling. There was no flight, but rather that of uncontrolled free-fall. Each time I would wake up just before impact; bare-knuckle, in your face, heart-pounding fear. This continued until one night, my legs moved, and suddenly, like swimming, kicking my legs could slow the descent. At least the shock was gone, and I wasn’t waking up anymore with a gasp for breath.
As the pattern of falling began to slow, the dream of flight evolved to a new level. It all started on the tire swing in front of my Aunt Sophie’s house back in southern Indiana. They, too, lived on an old gravel road out in the country.
Underneath the shade of a large oak tree in their front yard, they had a tire swing. In the dream, my cousin was pushing me on the swing when the rope broke. Of course, the tire and I were at the apex of the arc, and when the rope broke, we continued upward instead of down. As in the previous dreams up to this point, I began kicking my legs. Now, as if the tire added a new dimension, my altitude increased.
My flight pattern was very unstable, so to try to level out, I stuck out my arms. Things improved, and the wind gave me a momentary lift. Unlike before, this time, it was working. I could hear the growing crowd down below yelling. Other family members had joined to watch me fly away. However, what I thought were cheers of joy were warnings. Ahead of me, the massive steel tower power lines were looming. In the thrill of finally learning to fly, I had not been watching where I was going. Who could know? My focus had been on staying above the ground and not crashing like so many times before. Now I had to maneuver as well?
It was at the moment of impact that the alarm clock beside my bed began to spill a horrid buzzing sound into my ears. Nothing like waking up and feeling and sounding as if you had just been electrocuted to death. Unlike the feeling of joy from “flying” dreams past, this one was replaced with a bittersweet aroma of doom.
However, this did not end my dreams of flying.
In time, my flight would evolve from the tire swing to soaring without it. Eventually, my leg kicking and the holding of my arms like wings would cease. As the years passed, my ability to fly in my dreams had significantly improved. The sense of knowing that a spirit within is the mechanism changed everything. Once this was achieved, my maneuverability improved as well. For example, one night’s dream sent me into a gift shop, filled with crystal collectibles. I flew through the store without knocking anything off the shelf or touching the ground. I awoke with a renewed sense of mastery, at least in my dreams.
So, as I stood on the edge of the precipice about to take off, my mind recalled the previous levels of achievement. In my heart, I knew that this was a gift from God. From knowing that I was not alone, I took flight for what might be the last time. Up through the wires, my body lifted. The sensation of hair standing up on my skin as I passed through the high-voltage lines tickled my flesh. Soaring upward and beyond the compound, a feeling of triumph overcame me. I gave thanks for the freedom to do as I may, and in so doing, was now able to free those within.
Unlike ever before, I had finally used my gift of flight for a purpose.
As promised, a sense of returning and freeing the captives, including the chubby little boy, washed over me as I awoke. It had been a troubling ordeal, but in the end, goodness and mercy won out over evil.
Jokingly, as I shared this with my pastor this morning, I said that maybe God was training me to be an Angel. For as in Isaiah 40, those that need strength are sustained. For they shall mount up on wings like eagles. As Samuel talked about King David, and his writing of the Psalm when he had finally defeated Saul, he describes God as riding on a cherub and could be seen riding upon the wind.
From those marvelous dreams of flight, especially the ones of late, there is no greater sensation than that of feeling your body lift off the ground, weightless, unbound by the gravitational boundaries of this world. As David describes, to be free to ride upon the wind is to know God.
Someday, we shall be afforded this opportunity, should we choose wisely.
As I lay on the grass, looking up to the sky, I was thankful to be lying on this side of the sod. There underneath a clear blue azure sky, my eyes soaked in the glory of God’s creation. Someday, my body will be six feet below. Then, I will no longer be hostage to the physical world into which I was born. Eventually, my spirit will be free to fly above those birds of flesh and metal.
Then, and only then will we be free.
Thanks be to God.
“ He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength…But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:29,31
“And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: and he was seen upon the wings of the wind.” – 2 Samuel 22:11
Timothy W. Tron lives in Collettsville, NC. with his family. He is the former Director of the Trail of Faith in Valdese, where he still volunteers and helps with tours. He is the author of a new Christian series, “Children of the Light”, with the first book being, “Bruecke to Heaven”, and his recent book, being the second, “The Light in the Darkness”. He is an active blogger, artist, and musician. Timothy also has a BSEE from UF, and is a Lay Speaker. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can visit his website at //www.timothywtron.com/ or see more of his writings HERE.