I wake to their chatter, the unmistakable conversation of south-flown robins filling the silence as soon as I crack open the door to do a jacket check. Overnight, hundreds of these red-breasted beings have chosen my back yard as a place of rest.
Scattered at even intervals across the green, road-weary wings tucked, they bask in early morning sun, warming themselves as a few almost casually seek their breakfast. As long as my feet stay firmly on the concrete, as long as the children use their inside voices, the birds stay.They watch us. We watch them, each a rapt audience, ever attentive to the other's every move.
Over by the "swamp," amidst the delicate parrot feather and frost bitten water hyacinths, water droplets spray a foot into the air as a few of the braver ones duck their heads beneath the water's surface, fluff their feathers wide for the cleaning before taking wing to safety in the tree branches overhead where they'll roost today.I realize I haven't even filled the feeder for the finches that arrived last week, not that these larger birds would stoop to choosing my store-bought seed over the meal the Lord provides beneath their feet, but at least I would feel as if I were helping sustain them.
How they cover so many miles each winter, how so many survive the trip when sustaining pit-stops of forest and field continue to shrink with urban sprawl. Each year, it amazes me.
Yet, I do know the how. Their arrival comes only days after I spoke the how to a class of four and five year old children in Sunday School, after I watched little sponges gobble up the words of Christ before taking crayons, glue, and sunflower seeds to create a reminder of answers to the very questions that just coursed through my mind. This is just another of those God-incidences where the Father pieces together circumstances in the everyday to show me Himself.
"Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows" (Matt. 10:29-31).
The same God who protected each bird on its seemingly impossible flight here--he is the God who cares for all life. He is the God who does not need me to help feed the birds. No, He is quite capable on His own. Yet, He allows me to participate in ministering to His creation.
It's the physical and spiritual needs of the hurting, the hungry, the homeless that burden me. God calls me to do more. He demands that I do more to be Christ's hands and feet to those whom many would consider as worthless as a sparrow. This is the path I'm seeking, the ministry opportunity I'm listening for.
I'm linking here to a YouTube video with David Platt's interview of Katie Davis of Kisses from Katie and her newly published book by the same name.
Listening to Katie's burden for both the spiritual and physical needs of children in Uganda, my heart can't help but hear her burden echo within it. Maybe your heart will echo the same.
Joining in community each Wednesday with Jennifer Dukes @ Getting Down With Jesus.