Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Flying Rats and God's Providence and Care

I had a couple of encounters with Pigeons today. Not the majestic native wood[pigeon's of New Zealand (Maori name Kereru) but the common garden variety, urban nuisance, flying rats.

It is the spring equinox at the moment which means unpredictable weather and high winds. So there are a lot of (or a flock of) pigeons sheltering behind the chapel today. AS I walked down to pick up a gluten free bun for communion tonight (Worship on Wednesday) I had to step my way through about ten pigeons that decided with the wind it was easier to walk, and they scurried round my feet, bobbing up and down in that comical way they do. I had to stop and look at them, or risk scrapping one of f my boot and once again I was amazed at how different and unique each pigeon was. Normally you just think pigeons! flying rats! eating and crapping machines! but each bird had a different pattern on their wings.

It reminded me again of a passage in the Sermon on the Mount... (Matthew 6:25-34)

25 “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? 26 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? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Reminding me again of God's ability to look after us: To care and know even each of these vermin individually and care for them.

On the way back to the chapel, I was walking with my head down wrestling with decisions I have to make and how they might impact on the family and I, and  almost like I needed a reminder not to look down but to look up I found myself in the midst of a flight of pigeons, leaving the chapel as the storm winds calmed down. I was a moving obstacle in their way and I was forced to look up and see them flying all around me.

Thank you God for your provision and care,
I put my trust in you
Thank you God that even if on of these should fall you know
Help me continue to look up and put your kingdom first.

Addendum: The day after writing this blog I opened my email and read  the verse and voice email from Sojourners and found this quote

"If you're going to care about the fall of the sparrow you can't pick and choose who's going to be the sparrow. It's everybody."- Madeleine L'Engle
A reminder from the Lord that while my focus has been on my own situation we need to remember that the fact that God knows even when a sparrow falls to the ground is a call to remember God's care is for everyone and his call to put first the Kingdom of God  is to do the same.

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