I’ve been homesick these past few days. So to ward off a full-blown pity party, I have been reminding myself of all the reasons I’m thankful to be here in Florida.
Obviously, I’m thankful to be exactly where God has called us doing the ministry He has called us to. I really will get to Part 8 sometime so you’ll know the whole story. But I also have been thinking of all the other things I have to be thankful for here.
We live beside a beautiful lake. The view out my kitchen window is like a postcard. Palm trees. Rippling water. Sailboats. It really is beautiful. And the city has this really lovely walkway beside the lake. There are park benches every few feet and a couple covered sitting areas with huge porch swings. When the sun is shining and a breeze is blowing off the lake, it feels just about perfect to sit and swing and watch the boats and the birds and the water.
So this morning, after the other children went to school, I strapped Griffin (2) in the stroller, took Jackson (3) by the hand, and grabbed a few extra pieces of bread. And we went to feed the birds by the lake.
So many birds! Ducks, these pigeons or doves with a bluish-color in their wings, white ibis, a whole flock of sea gulls*, some crows, and some little brown birds, even a snowy egret. They were circled all around us as we tossed bread to them. I actually kept saying, “Jackson, toss it way way over there so the birds won’t get so close!” They were creeping me out a little. But they were beautiful. And they were a reminder to me of something else I can be thankful for.
As I fed the birds and watched them skim the water or land on a branch or peck at each other, I remembered what Jesus said to His disciples. God knows about each of those birds. Each quack and squawk, each feather, each beady little eye. God knows them. God knows we were feeding them this morning. He knows where they landed and which ones would catch a crumb in mid-air. He knew that the group of three ducks would see us from all the way across a little pond and come swimming over. He knew Jackson would take a liking to the duck that stood not two feet from him just patiently waiting for his turn. And because he was so patient and calm and close, that little guy got lots of crumbs from Jackson. God saw it all. Jesus said not one little bird could escape our Father’s notice.
Those birds aren’t made in His image. He didn’t breathe life into them. He didn’t die for them. Oh, how much more does our Father know the details of MY life! He is taking care of me. He is providing for our every need. He will feed us and clothe us and meet all our physical needs. He is watching over the crows and egrets and ducks, so He is definitely watching over me.
And not only that — our Father can also meet my other needs. He can satisfy my loneliness when I’m homesick. He will comfort me and guide me and be my friend. He loves me. He has created a beautiful world with rippling water and blowing palm trees and flowers of every color. He’s created it so that we can enjoy it together, He and I, and so that I will remember His glory and greatness. He is watching over the great egret standing in the lake looking for fish. He is even watching over those turkey vultures that won’t get out of the street. He is definitely watching over me!
Yes, I have so much to be thankful for.
How about you? What is the creation teaching you about the Creator?
*No, Patrick, not the 80’s band. 🙂