Thursday, October 4, 2012

Bird Feeders and Creation

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. 
Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  
 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?   
Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”  (Matthew 6:25-7)
     I have always love this Scripture about our Heavenly Father feeding the birds and the beauty of the flowers, and if He cares for such small things,  how much more are we to God and how much He cares for us. 
     Yet, one day, while I was watching all of these sparrows gathered at my bird feeder, it struck me:  am I part of how my Heavenly Father feeds the birds?  The Scripture says that He feeds them, yes, but it doesn’t say how He feeds them. 
     Of course, one could argue that seeds and insects abound, and the birds can always find something to eat.  And yet, they come to my feeder.  It’s easier than chasing a bug.  I keep my feeder full and so a bounty of seed is always waiting for the birds.  So, am I a part of how God is taking care of His creation?
     Then this led me to ponder two points about God's personality and how He works.  First:  He cares for His creation.  He didn’t set it into motion and then stepped away into a far corner of the universe with other matters on His mind.  He is mindful of His creation, mainly us:  What is man that You take thought of him, And the son of man that You care for him?” (Psalm 8:4)   
     I fill my feeders as often as I can--I am mindful of the birds that visit it, and if it is empty, I feel that I have neglected them.  I am imperfect, yet we bear the stamp of our Creator, and if I worry about such things, how much more does my Heavenly Father take time and concern for those He loves?
     Secondly, He uses us to achieve His work on this planet.  We are His hands and feet, and if we don’t go, then the work building His kingdom is delayed.  He will find any method He can to reach out to us, but we forgo His blessings if we are not dutiful to His call.  He may call someone else, but we each have a unique set of skills and influence that we may exert, and He wants us to go forward, with the prayer of Isaiah on our lips:  “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’”(Isaiah 6:8).
     Then, if you draw those two ideas together, even the smallest of things--a smile, a helping hand, a card, an offer of prayer--can take on epic proportions, for we are working hand in hand with the Creator to bring His love to a hungry world.   
     The world is hungry for peace--we serve the very Prince of Peace.  
     It is hungry for bread--we serve the very One who calls Himself "the Bread of Life."  
     It is thirsty for refreshment:  we serve the very One Who calls Himself "Living Water."   
     But we shrink away, and say, "I am not all that important, or all that influential."  Really?
     If you think you are not important, don’t fill up a bird feeder for a while.  The little birds gather and look around.  I see them through the kitchen window, reminding me that I have a job to do.  It’s a simple one, but remember what happens when you put a few loaves and a few fish into His hands?  You can feed thousands!
Dearest Father:  Help me not to underestimate my contribution to the world, lest I fail You in even the smallest of ways.  You built Your church one person at a time, and I can do no less.  Help me not to shrink away but realize that by placing my hand into Your hands, anything is possible!  To You be the glory!  Amen.

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