I lay in bed this morning under the window as the crisp April air drifts through the curtains. I am greeted this morning with the haunting call of the mourning doves who have nested in the hedges not far from the sill, the shrillness of the crow, grackle and starling, the sweet chirps of the many sparrows, the vibrating sound of the red-winged black bird, the whistle of the many robins returned from their winter vacation in the south and the cheerful morning song from the northern cardinal. We call him Bob. I don’t know why.
I live in the city, work full time, raise my family, ride a motorbike, serve in prison and seniors ministry yet the simplicity of the sounds of God’s creation greet me today and give a sense of serenity and peace in the midst of a busy world. There must be something we can learn from our feathered friends. Matthew 6:26 (NIV) reads “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”
Without even going deep into an exegetical analysis of the origins and interpretations, it seems that the birds know that there is someone over them who cares and provides. Why do we worry so much? The birds who sometimes seem to dart around without reason do much the same as we ought to; provide for their family, enjoy the engagement with each other, build a suitable home that meets their needs using what is provided for them, sing like no one is listening, dance in the rain, bask in the sun, early to bed, early to rise. In contrast, we often get to busy for others, neglect the ones we love, buy and build bigger and better, find embarrassment in others ‘catching’ us sing or dance, especially in the rain, lather up the sun screen or stay indoors, stay up late (often working) and getting up early only to go back out to work, or some times sleep until noon.
The birds may just have something on us. As many of us work our tails off to keep up with the Jones’, we miss out on the simple things in life. We fail to trust that God is looking out for us…what makes us think we can do better?
Again I am reminded of the basics. Trust. Enjoy. Rest. Listen. Everyone has a story. Even the birds.