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A Mama Bird and Me

I forgot to write this post. But thankfully, a bird reminded me to. 

As I’ve mentioned before, I love being outside. Sitting in the garden, in the midst of God’s solace. I do this most mornings, as a nice little break, and I love it, especially now that a cardinal has made a nest in our yard. 

In fact, this cardinal couple hasn’t just chosen our yard as a safe spot for their growing family, but chosen my spot…

Where I sit in my Adirondack chair. 

Where I rest in the shade provided by flowering bushes and a tiny tree. 

Where I talk to God, pondering the wonders of His Creation. 

It is there, right above me, that this bird’s nest lies. 

As you can probably imagine, I was elated to discover such a wonderful gift. Birds have always been inspiring to me (the whole freedom of flight thing, I guess), but this particular type of bird has a special place in my heart:

You see, when I started college, things were rough. Like really rough. 

One fall evening, I found myself on a wooded walking trail bawling my eyes out, pleading with God to make things better. I rounded a corner and stopped in my tracks; a brilliant cardinal, bright red against the wood’s fading browns, was perched right in front of me.

Stoic and still. Assured. 

I can’t explain it, but I knew that cardinal was there for me. That God put this calm, confident bird in my path… in a time when I was anything but. 

Upon seeing that bird, my soul was instantly soothed. I didn’t know how, but I knew that I could count on the Lord, that He would make a way. 

And He did. The very next day. 

Ever since then, cardinals have been my own little reminder of God’s provision, and let me tell you, I’ve been needing that reminder lately. 

Now, back to these current cardinals and how they reminded me to write… 

As I was chilling in the garden (okay, not really chilling; more like thinking a million thoughts in a millisecond), I heard the sharp call of a cardinal. 

She swooped across our yard and landed somewhere in the bushes behind me. Still chirping. Loudly.

This isn’t really typical for that mama cardinal, especially when I’m outside. But I have two theories as to why she was drawing a bunch of attention to herself:

Either I have somehow blended into the background of the greenery (in my rainbow tie-dye shirt, of course), or this mama was so focused on getting back to her eggs that she decided to overlook the giant tie-dyed monster sitting beneath her. 

I don’t know about you, but I’m leaning towards option two. 

And the weird thing is, I have no idea why this mama was being so vocal. I make a point to keep my distance from the nest (just sit there, hardly move, and definitely don’t get too close) and none of the stray cats were prowling nearby. 

All was quiet and calm. Except for her. 

She stayed this way as she hopped from bush to bush, branch to branch, chirping with reckless abandon… until she landed, finally, in her home. 

As soon as she settled into her nest, she stilled. It was like her peace had been restored; this was where she was meant to be. It was amazing to see. 

And it reminded me of this. This blog, and this season that I’m in. 

Way back in January I wrote about being on a ‘break’ with a guy. An indefinite one. One where I felt convicted to wait, to not reach out until he did, to take this time to grow closer to the Lord. 

I’m still waiting. 

Never in a million years did I think it would be five months. God gave me a sense that it wouldn’t be during the school year, so I said, fine, okay, he’ll reach out after the semester. 

But then I went to Ireland, and I was sure that he would be calling soon after I returned home.  

That was over a month ago. Still nothing.  

As you can imagine, this made me discouraged. Made me doubt God’s call to wait. So when I discovered this mama bird a few weeks ago, I felt an odd sense of kinship with her. 

We were both waiting, her for her eggs to hatch, and me, for, well, something

It’s been on my heart to write about this waiting season for the last few weeks because, like He always does, God’s been teaching me something…

Waiting doesn’t just demand patience; it also requires surrender. 

Friends, I’ve spent the last five months of my life daydreaming and planning and wondering on my own. Yes, God has given me convictions, but He has not put an end date on this waiting season. I was the one who did that. Or tried to, at least.

Like a mama bird waiting for her babies to arrive, she has no way of knowing the exact day and time that her waiting will finally be brought to an end. 

It is out of her control. Beyond her. She has no choice but to surrender. 

She has to let her Creator rule. 

I mean, can you imagine how disastrous it would be if that mama cardinal decided, oof! Enough’s enough! I’m just gonna peck these shells until my babies come out? The results would not be good! It's the same with us.

We are not God. We are finite and limited and our plans do not hold up. I’ve been learning this the hard way, learning to fully surrender myself to the Lord. I pray that you do too. 

Maybe that mama bird was being so loud today because God wanted her to get my attention. And maybe this blog is how He’s getting your attention too:

Let go, dear friends. In the waiting, He is working.

Give Him your everything, be still, and watch how He’ll work wonders.  


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