"Flight 2201 to Virgin Islands is now boarding."
I reluctantly rose from my seat to get in line, and the rest of my family just stood there making sure I got on board. No one said goodbye. Three siblings came to the states for a better life. One would leave in disgrace before her dream could be realized.
My parents were sending me back home as an example of what happens when you make decisions like I had made during my first year in college, and I'd be taking an expanding stomach along with me. Nothing further needed to be said. I was a living, walking, finger-warning message.
Under the gaze of condemning eyes, I boarded the plane knowing that another set of the same eyes would greet me on the other side.
The plane accelerated for take-off, and I watched my life in America shrink to nothing as I ascended into the clouds. I couldn't see anything out of the window, and I couldn't see what steps lie ahead for me either.
I had made a mistake and was left alone to pick up the pieces, two mouths to feed and an aging grandmother to look after-- after she got through with me. No telling how long that would take. She always had one hand on the Bible and another with a finger pointed in my face.
"Ya know, the Lord says. . ."
I could never listen to the rest because I could never be good enough for the God she was talking about, and I tremble to think about what lies ahead since I wasn't good enough then. I certainly would never be good enough now.
Maybe the plane will crash.
But my my Aunt Clare would be sad. She always talked about a God that my parents and grandmother didn't seem to know. I wish she had come to the airport, but she told me last night she would not make it and slipped me an envelope which I removed from my bag. It contained a booklet with the title: Jesus Loves You.
On the inside cover, she wrote: Dear Ekay, read this whenever you start feeling you're not good enough to be loved and remember nothing can separate you from the love of God. Love, Aunt Clare.
Inside there were pages of rinted verses from the bible beginning with the one she quoted, Romans 8:38. If nothing means no- thing, then maybe Jesus was still in my life since the day I invited Him in a few years ago.
As I was reading, a brightness fell across the page. I looked out the window and was blinded by the light of the sun. We had soared above the clouds and the beams of the sun warmed my body. I pulled the shade down and continued reading, yearning for the God in the pages. I began to reread some of those verses until I could say them from memory.
The seat buckle light came on followed by the voice of the stewardess directing us to fasten our seat-belts because the captain was preparing for descent.
My heart skipped a beat. Was I ready to land? I tightly gripped the booklet; the verses flooded my mind and settled my spirit.
Some may expect me to be an example of punishment, but when I walk into the airport with all of my baggage, I intend to live as an example of a thankful recipient of God's undying love.
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