Iron Feathers

It’s unusual, I admit, but it’s 9:30 am and I’m writing my post for the day. I’m still in Oklahoma City and left the hotel at 8:00 am, boarding the shuttle for the short ride to Will Rogers Airport. By 8:15, I had arrived and was already through security! For once, I was the only one in line and the TSA agents were incredibly friendly. Maybe that’s because they weren’t being cursed at by angry passengers who were fed up standing in line waiting to get to their gates…  My flight doesn’t leave for another 70 minutes, and I have wandered the airport from stem to stern – stopping by every gate, going through every store and reading every plaque on the walls of this somewhat modern, clean facility.

At first, I thought about sleeping in a little this morning, but I thought I might as well get to the airport and just sit here. On top of that, my internal clock is still on eastern time and at 7:00 this morning (8 am eastern) I received my morning call from Janet with her traditional greeting. For those of you who are familiar with this blog, you may recall that each day we are apart, we start the day by exchanging our now famous line, “Good morning, my love…” I can’t tell you how much I look forward to hearing those words each day, and since I won’t be home until Thursday evening, this is a long week away. So, after our short chat, it was off to the airport for me.

I haven’t been in this airport in more than three years – the last time was when Janet and I flew out here and then rented a car to go see Tom and Jill, who live in Reydon, OK, about three hours west of the airport on the Texas border. Now I am not an Oklahoma kind of a guy, and I think it is safe to say that Janet and I will never move out here, but there is one thing that I really like in Oklahoma. That’s the sky – it seems to go on forever. Admittedly, the land is flat and there aren’t many tall buildings but nonetheless, the sky is beautiful. I was reminded of it’s beauty as I was landing on Monday afternoon. And then again, when storms rolled in on Monday evening and you could see cloud formations on the horizon miles away; and watch as the storm front developed. It was awesome. So as I sit here this morning, my eyes are drawn out the huge windows, watching the sky, big as life, as the clouds roll across from west to east.

But I better get to the point of this post. As I was touring the concourse, I came across a statue and commentary on Will Rogers, whose name graces the front of this airport. And next to that was a plaque honoring the Choctaw Indians who settled the region eons ago. In fact, the the name Oklahoma was adopted in 1866 and actually means “red people.” I never knew that before today. Anyway, part of the commentary on the wall celebrated the installation of an art exhibit entitled “Iron Feathers.” It is a beautiful display of four seventy foot long arrows that look like they have landed in the ground. Four colored bands on the shafts symbolize the four seasons and the rusting shafts of iron symbolize wisdom with age as each year the arrows look more like the dark red Oklahoma soil. And against that huge, open Oklahoma sky, they look incredible.

The plaque also lets the reader know “Iron Feathers” also symbolizes the strength, integrity and larger-than-life efforts of the Native Americans who originally settled Oklahoma. Well, that’s kind of similar to what happened in the times of the patriarchs in the book of Genesis. Isaac, the son of Abraham, was encouraged to settle in a area called Gerar rather than to go to Egypt as he had been inclined to do. So Isaac listened to God and did as he was told – he stayed in Gerar. The stark contrast this morning between the huge sky and the large arrows in a field of flowers reminded me of Genesis and our verse for today. In Gen. 26:4, after he decided to obey God, Isaac was told, “I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and will give them all these lands, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed.” God was renewing the covenant with Isaac that He had made with Abraham.

My encouragement today is to let you know that Jesus renews His covenant with us and each successive generation if we will only accept Him as our Lord and Savior. My prayer is that you will be as dedicated to obey the word of God as Isaac was and that you will have the strength, integrity and larger-than-life commitment to God that the Choctaw Tribe had to their belief system. Have a great day in the Lord; grace and peace…


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