A Bird (Not) In the Branches

Proverbs 16:9 The heart of a man plans his way, but the lord establishes his steps.

Tap tap…thump…tap. I’ve been sick for three days and all my aching body wants is some rest.   Apparently the bird outside my window does not realize this. He is flying from window to window outside my bedroom, tapping and sometimes even loudly thumping like he is desperate to get inside. I don’t know why; I’m not sure the bird knows why either. Maybe he sees something he likes in here, or maybe he’s curious about what is on the other side of that shiny glass?

What is he looking for?
What is he looking for?

I have no idea, but as I was putting the covers over my head and trying to muffle the noise, I felt like God was giggling at me.

If I’m honest, I’ve been like this bird, trying to break into something that wasn’t made for me. If my bird-friend got into my bedroom, what trouble would ensue! This room wasn’t made for a bird; there are no places for him to perch on the vertical walls, there are dangerous ceiling fans for him to contend with, and he won’t find any freedom here. He would be caged in, scared, and completely out of his element. God knew what he was doing when he created that bird because he also created the perfect dwelling place made just for him in the tree in my yard, a place where he can find the nourishment and freedom he craves.

God knew what he was doing when he created us, too. He knows what we need to thrive, he provides the nourishment we need, and he offers the freedom we crave. I’ve missed the mark so many times, thinking I knew better than he did of where I needed to be, frantically trying to break through the glass like Mr. Bird into some seemingly great place.

Many years ago when I was a young teenager, I thought it would be fun to model. The idea of the glamour and easy money was appealing, and because of my height, modeling was an opportunity that was entertained by a few scouting agents.   They sent me to gatherings of agencies in LA and San Francisco where I would line up with dozens of other girls, show my headshots, and see if anyone would sign me. No one did. I was seen by over 20 modeling agencies that summer and was rejected by all of them. While this was definitely disappointing at the time, I can see that it was God’s protection and I’m thankful for the rejection. I doubt I’d have this life if I had succeeded in breaking through the glass into the world of modeling. Now that I have a little bit of years and wisdom under my belt (along with a few extra inches), I realize I wouldn’t trade any part of my life now for the glamour, fame or financial success modeling could have offered me. If I had succeeded in that path, it would have changed the path I’m on now.

Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”

I can be just like this bird, thinking in my limited understanding that I know the best way for me, and being relentless in trying to pursue MY way. Mr. Bird has been thumping on my window for two very long and annoying hours now, so yes, we share the characteristic of stubbornness persistence. Good news: The Lord sees well-perfectly actually-and He knows what’s best for us. All we have to do is trust and acknowledge him like it says in Proverbs 3:5-6, and he will show us the way (which will not include beating our heads repeatedly against someone’s window. Can I get an AMEN?!?)

Frustrated Bird

Is there something you have been trying to “break through” to do, but you haven’t been able to do it? Or maybe you’ve made it through the glass, but now you realize being inside is actually outside of His plan for you. We all miss the mark sometimes. That’s what grace is for. He is faithful to rescue us from the room that wasn’t made for us and He redeems our broken windows.

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3 thoughts on “A Bird (Not) In the Branches

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