Illustration: Faith, Eagle

After watching the bald eagle in flight, some people are surprised to learn that Benjamin Franklin wanted to make the wild turkey the American national bird. While turkeys are beautiful in their own way, they cannot soar as can eagles. It is the eagle's seven-foot wingspan and 7,000 lightweight feathers that allow it to rise thousands of feet into the air with seemingly no effort.

It is not the eagle's ability to fly that takes it higher and higher but its ability to capture the rising thermal updrafts under its outstretched wings. The prophet Isaiah must have watched eagles soar over Israel as he used them as an illustration of the one who waits (hopes) on the Lord. It is not our strength that will carry us higher and farther, but the Lord's. Our responsibility is to spread our wings of faith and let His strength take us where we never could go on our own. If you are falling, failing or feeling weak, exercise your hope in the Lord; allow His strength to lift you up.

Soaring by faith means setting your sights on heights you never could reach without God's help. (Turning Point Daily Devotional, 6-26-07)