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What comes to mind when you see this image of Dumbo soaring effortlessly in the sky?

I think most of us will smile. We may say awww. Adorable.  Fun.  Cute. Freedom.  He makes you feel all warm and fuzzy!

Yet when I look deeper at the image I begin to have so many questions.  Hmmm, that is impossible.  How can he do that?  Elephants aren’t supposed to fly.  Of course, this can happen only in a fairy tale.

I always wondered why Dumbo didn’t look different from all the other elephants. Yes, his ears were a little big but he’s an elephant and they all have big ears!  After all, since he could fly that bumped him up to super hero status in my mind.  He doesn’t look like a super hero.  He doesn’t wear a cape.  He doesn’t wear a mask. He looks like any ordinary circus elephant.  Although he had those awful hallucinations about dancing pink elephants, he isn’t a different color.  There is nothing unique to make him stand out.

Until…

One day Dumbo decides to jump.  This jump is different because he is asked to jump from a higher platform than all of his previous jumps.  Scared, he does it and it’s a fantastic jump.  A life-changing jump. This jump enables Dumbo to discover he can truly fly all on his own, without a magic feather, by flapping those huge ears that caused others to laugh at and shun him.  To make him feel ashamed.

Isn’t that how it is with us?  We all go about our daily lives and most of us don’t look any different from our family, friends, peers, colleagues, etc. on the outside. We may not stand out.  Yet often we walk around on the inside where we focus on how someone has mistreated us, laughed at us, or made us feel like an outsider or less than.  But there is something unique about each of us.

God will use our life challenges and circumstances to take each of us to higher platforms in our lives.  Then He will gently push us to see what we will do. We don’t believe in magical feathers like Dumbo.  We believe in the promises provided by the word of God.  Will we use our faith to help us soar and fly high above doubts, despair, disappointments? Do we believe that His promises are true?  Do we really truly trust Him to do what His word says?

If we trust and wait on God, that seemingly impossible circumstance often gives us the push we need to give us greater strength.   Before we know it we will be flying high like Dumbo.

But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.  – Isaiah 40:31

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