Janet and I are enjoying the first several months in our new home that happens to be situated on a small 14 acre lake. We have always wanted a summer home but could never bring ourselves to own two separate properties that would both need to be maintained. Finally, this past fall, we made the decision to leave our last place and the perfect opportunity presented itself for us to realize our dream of a comfortable home – on a small body of water. All is well with the world.
Now I have been around a number of lake houses with boats and skiing and all the other water activities one has when they live on a busy lake. But that’s not what Janet and I did. In fact, I guess I could throw a fly line in the water, or paddle a canoe – but other than that, this lake is primarily for just watching… watching nature and God’ creation unfold right before our very eyes.
Last fall, when we looked at the property, it was getting chilly outside and the wildlife around the lake was disappearing. But so far this spring, in spite of the cold, we have been witnesses to a rare treat – the return of the swans and our resident ducks. We had no idea that we would get so jazzed watching a duck swim across the surface. So calm and collected above the water and so feverishly paddling below the surface. And to see the ducks dive under water and swim relatively long ways before they pop back up to the surface – preening and cleaning themselves every step of the way.
I am excited about the ducks, and there are hundreds of them, covering the water like so many corks bobbing up and down in the wind and the rain and I never seem to grow tired of watching them. It’s kind of cathartic. The man who sold us this home said there were also eight swans who called this water home. One day several weeks ago, we saw 7 of them on the water – just beautiful. And then, as quickly as they arrived, they disappeared – until this morning. I happened to be looking out the back window and there, in perfect formation, two swans were flying in to land right in back of our home on the edge of the water.
I couldn’t believe how large they were and how wide their wings spread when they were soaring in flight. Magnificent – just really something special. And then, how they sleep with their beaks tucked under their side feathers. God truly has some kind of imagination to create such creatures – who seem to live in perfect harmony with the ducks.
I can’t help but think of the Scriptures when I see the harmony of all the life outside our window. The verse for this evening appears in the first section of the Bible – way back in Genesis. We are told, in Genesis 1:20-22, “And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky.” So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living and moving thing with which the water teems, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth.”
God saw that it was good – I can believe that. My encouragement this evening is that God created the animals and gave us dominion over them. We have a responsibility to take care of that which has been entrusted to our care. My prayer is that you will thank God for all the blessings that we have had bestowed on us. Because all of us can enjoy the simple pleasures – even watching the swans and the ducks dive and put on a show worthy of the Father. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…