IMG_3094On every plane trip I am reminded of the expectation that comes from hope.  It is not just the power of the take off nor is it the flight through empty skies nor is it landing.  Everyone of those flying features are a part of air travel.  Yet, there is another desperate unrelenting part of flying that never ceases to tickle my mind.

When I arrive at the airport, I check a bag.  I have tried many times to avoid this but, it is just easier to do it.  Over time I have learned to watch the check-in process.   The few times when my bags have been delayed, once the tags were misapplied.

Other than that one occasion, it was a matter of complications resulting from multiple stops en route to my final destination.  Instincts left me without surprise.  I was not expecting my bag to show up.  Nevertheless, I always hope for the best.

When I approach baggage claim, the carousel is usually silent and still.  Many passengers wait impatiently, standing around the luggage machine. A huge chute dumps the bags on the metal conveyor.  People light up when their bag appears.  I feel the sensation of great relief.

While I am waiting, hope springs eternal.  Sometimes I play a game and try to guess what number my bag will be.  Only once in all of the years of traveling has my bag been first.

I had joked that the first bag was a plant.  It belonged to the airline.  No passenger ever claimed it.  Instead, it was a marketing ploy.  That is what I used to say to myself until that one time when my bag was first.

Seeing my bag appear is hard to explain.  It is the culmination of hope.  Satisfaction is a part of it.  That sense of relief is certainly what dominates.

“Whew!” is my most common reaction.  Now, I can be about my business of my travel.  Slowly and methodically my bag rounds the curve.  I wait.  It is on its way.  Once it appears it is just a few moments and it will be in my hands.  Hope has been fulfilled.  With my eyes I have seen and the promise by the airlines to deliver my goods has been satisfied.  Some day the greatest of all hopes will be seen by the whole world. Jesus says He will return.  We have every reason to believe it will be fulfilled.

photo credit: brucefong cellphone photography