It didn’t register that this might be the big thunderstorm we’d missed during the summer, until the airline gate agent urged us to hurry up and get on board because the pilot wanted to outrun the storm. Now, I had known there might be a better than average chance of severe weather the day of our scheduled departure – but hey, it’d been dry here in Dallas for weeks. So, we scurried on the plane – us and 123 other souls. (You can figure how fast we were moving if you have lined up for boarding and waited for those with carry on luggage!) But, buckled in, we felt a surge of hope as we felt the mighty plane back out of the gate, in just few raindrops.
We would beat this severe weather!
But we stopped – out of nowhere, heavy rain made visibility zero; 65-75 mph wind gusts rocked the 737, and I thought, oh great – I will die in a plane crash as we are lifted up by a microburst and then pummeled back to the ground! Lightening illuminated the runway for an instant – the same bolt that blew out the power for 300,000 Dallas residents; thunder followed, and the plane returned to a new gate . . . and we slowly filed off, knowing we had out-run only our travelers’ luck.
The storm was over quickly – our re-boarding took somewhat longer, six hours longer. You can fill in all the details, if you have enjoyed a similar storm related air-travel adventure. We boarded another flight – but that too was canceled.
Joining now the tired exodus out of Love Field, we hailed a cab, and headed home to our powerless house; grateful the storm had blown out the high temperatures when it toppled trees.
I considered just canceling our plans – but our luggage was no longer in our possession – and this trip was to a party that would never be held again. (THS Class of'64, fifty years later.)
We made it out the next day – and eventually reconnected with our luggage.
But I got to thinking about the hope of trying to out run trouble – especially in light of a recent You-tube by Brittany Maynard – a young woman with brain cancer. She is dying and wants to end her life on her terms. I am old and certain kinds of death scare me – from what I have seen. I would like to outrun what I have seen others suffer. And I know certain kinds of troubles – some folks can’t outrun, or solve on their own terms. I am grateful that one who knows the unique path Brittany travels, reached out to her. (Kara Tippets)
We all will be hit by something -- like our departing plane was; we will be rocked – and our plans will get canceled, the way our flight was. I don’t know why. I commend Christian Wiman’s words – they are steady light when the power is blown out by circumstances beyond my control.
The Mind of Dying
God let me give you now this mind of dying
fevering me back
into consciousness of all I lack
and of that consciousness becoming proud:
There are keener griefs than God.
They come quietly, and in plain daylight,
leaving us with nothing, and the means to feel it.
My God my grief forgive my grief tamed in language
to a fear that I can bear.
Make of my anguish
more than I can make. Lord, hear my prayer. ~ Christian Wiman
Of Note -- from a Blog worth exploring: A Call to Doubt and Faith