“Daddy, tomorrow I’m going to the hangar with you. We are going to go fly your airplane, eat our lunch in the mountains, and then fly home,” my four-year-old son Josiah declares with an air of confidence that’s immediately got me on my heels.
“Well, uhh, hmm, yeah, right—about that…” I stammer, in hopes something intelligent will come out. It doesn’t.
Early the next morning, he’s up and dressed on his own, aviator jacket donned, and in the kitchen loading his Paw Patrol lunch pail. Looks like I’m going to have an extra passenger along today! I’ve got an easy schedule so I figure, why not? Let’s do this!
Plane fueled, passengers loaded and briefed, Josiah buckled in behind me, my Pre-Start Checklist is interrupted with a sheepish, “Daddy?”
“Yes, son?” I answer.
An even quieter, “I love you, Daddy.”
My two passengers erupt with, “Aww’s!” and “Oooo’s!” I’m melted and more pleased than ever with my growing son. “I love you too, my boy,” I call to him through a broad smile.
It’s a short 30-minute flight over Lesotho’s mountains to our destination, and after a few thumbs-up from the back seat to the flight deck, we are circling overhead. Josiah yells over the roar of the engine, “Daddy, you are cleared to land!” I’m cracking up now and thinking this kid should fly with me more often. This is a blast!
My heart smiles as I consider how fortunate I’ve been to have my beloved son along this afternoon. The Lord blessed our time together today. I’ve had a number of memorable flights in Lesotho (and in my life for that matter), but this one just may be the most memorable and meaningful to me. We had our cold pizza for lunch, too, but today’s flight warms my heart with deep gratitude toward my Heavenly Father who orchestrated the whole thing in a way I never could.