"…And she smiles at the future." ~Proverbs 31:25

Posts tagged ‘nest’

Should we be building here?

On our recent camping trip, we strung up a makeshift clothesline to hang out some wet clothes after fishing.  It was only up for a few hours before we needed that rope for something else, and yet when we pulled the clothes down we found this in the pocket of Troy’s shorts:

We’d seen some small birds hanging out near our picnic shelter (I want to say finches, but a bird expert I am not, so who knows?) but we couldn’t believe that they’d chosen a shorts pocket as their building site and had moved in so quickly.

(By the way, I’m going to go out on a limb here–pun intended–and say that the Heath Bar wrappers were already in the pocket before the birds began their nesting. I won’t say how they got there. But they weren’t MY shorts.)

The next day, Troy reached into our 12-pack box of lemonade to grab a few cans for the cooler, and guess what he found inside?

Here’s a closer look:

I know it’s hard to see well because of the ground it’s sitting on, but there was quite an elaborate construction in that unlikely address!

Here’s a picture I haven’t shown you yet, but it was one of the first things we found when we surveyed our campsite, and you need to know about it…

…because when we turned that nest over, we saw it again!

Let me zoom in for you:

Amazing, right? In a way, I wanted to applaud these little birds for their resourcefulness. After all, they used what was available to them and were satisfied with it, and we could all learn a lesson from that. But, it was also sadly apparent that they made some really rotten choices for their construction sites! And I think there’s a lesson for us there, too.

How much of our time, money, and energy do we pour into obtaining and maintaining the perfect home here on earth? We know it won’t last, but we often let it become our focus. We forget about II Corinthians 4:18, “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

For those of us who are homemakers, we see our homes as a reflection of ourselves, and rightly so. It’s important to be good stewards of what we’ve been blessed with, and if it’s our job to take care of the house then we should certainly do the best we can with what we have. But what if we took some of the time, money, and energy we spend caring for the HOUSE (cleaning, decorating, shopping, repairing, remodeling, and so on) and put that into making a HOME instead? What if we emphasized loving, laughing, teaching, learning, growing, bonding, encouraging, praying, and serving each other over our houses and the things they contain?  Psalm 127:1 says, “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it….”

If I’m going to make a home, I want to establish it in the best possible place. I want to be building for eternity.

“For our citizenship is in heaven,

from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” 

Philippians 3:20

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On feathers, fur, and faithfulness

This week our family welcomed five new additions to our home. A pair of swallows recently returned to the nest they’d built on our front porch light, and we’ve been watching their five little eggs with great anticipation. Now the big day has finally arrived–the tiny hatchlings are here!

When we held a mirror up to the nest to peek inside, I was struck by how many feathers were surrounding those sweet babies.

I have read that while many birds automatically shed feathers from their brood patches while laying eggs, geese and ducks pluck their feathers themselves to line and insulate their nests. Think about that!

As children, we had a pet rabbit which pulled out most of the fur from her chest to protect her babies when it got cold.  Thinking about what these animals were willing to do for their young–even to the point of taking from their own bodies–amazes me.

And yet, who among us wouldn’t gladly give up any part of our own body if it enabled us to protect our children? We’d sacrifice our own lives to protect theirs.

And I know where we got that–from the Great Protector, Who made the ultimate sacrifice, and still wants to shelter us with His protection.

He will cover you with His feathers,
   and under His wings you will find refuge;
   His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

Psalm 91:4

Amazing, isn’t it?

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