Posts Tagged ‘birds’

Enjoying the NOW

      Watching birds has always brought me joy and relaxation.  I’m not in a “bird-watching” club, and I don’t spend hours searching for particular sightings – though it’s a great hobby for many.  I just enjoy stopping my busy routines when I spot a bird of interest, and watching. 
      Yesterday as I was sitting on the patio beside my camper, I noticed a pair of mourning doves who are frequenting the ground beneath my bird feeder.  They intriqued me, so I sat quietly, observing their behavior.  As I got caught up in my own thoughts I remembered back to a time almost 15 years ago in Troy, Tennessee, when I watched a Mourning Dove from my kitchen window. She was faithfully sitting on her nest, day after day.  Rain or glaring sun, she stayed put. Each evening I had gone out quietly to see if there were any little baby birds – but each time I only saw her sleek gray feathery body nestled down deep in the nest.  The nest was safely cradled in the hollow of an old, old apple tree.
      Our neighbors had wanted to cut down the whole tree because they said it was a nuisance with all the rotting apples falling to the ground each year.  And so, we had given them permission to cut it down. It turned out they didn’t have the tools they needed to cut it down completely, so they just cut off all the branches and left an ugly old 12 foot “stump”.  When spring came they wanted to cut it the rest of the way down, but I discovered just a tiny bit of life and decided to keep it.  We agreed that we’d wait it out one season until all the other trees had leafed out, and then if the tree was truly dead, we’d take it down.
        As the warm weather came, that old stump greened out and became very beautiful in its own way. One morning as I was looking from the kitchen window, I discovered the Mourning Dove.  I began watching her activities and contemplating why she was called “mourning” dove.  I used to think of her as a “Morning Dove, but this confused me because she sang her sad song each evening.  I began to wonder why God had given her such a sad song to sing each day.  Was she somehow actually sad? 
       Now this is where non-nature lovers may ask about my sanity, but that’s okay.  I decided to go out into the yard to sit next to the tree, and speak to her.  I told her I admired her for taking such good care of her little eggs, and how beautiful she was.  She cocked her head ever so slightly and blinked her eyes.  Then she just sat there listening as I talked.
       Another day as I was washing my dishes, I saw that she was still sitting there.  I had just been thinking about how boring and restless I was with the ordinariness of my daily routines, when I suddenly thought about her routine. She could fly off into the air, “free as a bird” any time she pleased, yet there she sat, day in and day out, taking care of her nest.  Suddenly I had the urge to go out and sit under her tree and read her a story.        Maybe that is the way God desires for me to enjoy the everyday things that He places in my life.  Perhaps I am to embrace the moment, live in the NOW, and rejoice with His creation.  It seemed logical to me. The dishes could wait; the laundry would be there later.  What a neat idea; me – reading a story to a bird. So that is exactly what I did.
         Today, all these years later, I’m not reading to my Mourning Doves.  I’m not talking to them.  I’m not studying them.  I’m just living in the moment- enjoying watching them, embracing the right NOW and glad to be alive this very moment in my Fathers wonderful world.  What an enjoyable and refreshing place in time to be; the now!  My mother often quoted a phrase, “Today well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness, and every tomorrow a vision of hope.”  Today, I choose right NOW.

Birds in Flight

Matthew 6:26 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?

 
Several years ago my sister and her family visited with us as we traveled to Sanibel Island, Florida.  I prepared my camera for the shot of birds in flight,  asked Miranda; my niece; to toss bread crumbs into the air, and I snapped my pictures.
 
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