“Don’t sit there – sit up there!”
“It’s wet and cold on the ground – it is much warmer and dryer over here…”
I wasn’t talking to another person and I was not talking to myself but I was trying to reason with a third party who seemed determined not to follow my sage guidance at all.
I had just released a little over a dozen small birds into my aviary, which has been vacant for some time. It was later in the evening than I had hoped and the light was fading – I was a little concerned that the birds, who were disoriented by their lengthy journey from the pet store, may not find a comfortable place to roost and might pass the cold night on the very cold ground. Because they were such small birds this could lead to all sorts of problems…
So I released them and the vast majority made it safely to a perch but there was one, and then two and at times four who seemed happier sitting on the ground. I repositioned them a couple of times, which is always fun to watch someone trying to catch a small bird, but each time I placed one on a perch another would head for the ground.
I soon realised that this was an ‘exercise in futility’ and I would have to let it go and see if they survived the night – I provided enough food, water and warmth for them to make the most of and I would see what happened.
The next morning I was very pleased to find them all perched safely and doing well – perhaps my concerns were unfounded and my actions redundant but it made me think about our responses to the plans and purposes of God.
The Lord has provided so much for each of us – the problem is that often times we don’t accept or make use of what is available. Whether it is the food, shelter or warmth He offers; the guidance, correction or encouragement He brings; or the faith, hope and love that change everything. Often we would rather sit on the ground because we think we know best!
My birds made it through the night because they made use of what had been provided – they may be completely unaware that it had been planned and purposed for their good. We can life safe, comfortable life, blissfully unaware of the care the Lord showers upon us each and every day – but let’s be better than birds!
“Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Matthew 6:26