Jill’s son Drew is here with us this week and for the past year or so, I have been taking him out in the yard with me each time I fill the bird feeders. Now he is only 3, about to be 4 years old, but he remembers the last time he and Jill were here and we went out in the yard to fill one of the feeders with peanuts. He seems to get pretty excited about peanuts. He reaches his hand in the bin and fills the scoop, then asks me to hold the feeder while he tries to dump the scoopful of peanuts into the feeder.
Let’s face it – he isn’t all that coordinated yet, so some of the peanuts always fall out on the ground and we have an agreement that we leave these for the squirrels. So we get to feed the squirrels and the birds. In a way, it’s kind of like gleaning, from the book of Ruth. We don’t go back and try to pick up every last thing that falls on the ground – we leave them for the other animals. Just like we learn in the in the story of Ruth and Naomi.
But the big thing I think about is that the birds depend a little bit on us for their food. I guess they could forage other places, but they are used to our yard and it is possible that there could be as many as 8 pairs of cardinals in the yard at the same time. They must know this place has great food for God’s creatures. But the truth of the matter is that we don’t really feed the birds – God does. The Scripture makes it quite clear that God takes care of them. We are told, in Luke 12:24, “Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!”
The point of this verse is that God created us in His own image – and that makes us more valuable to Him than the birds, or the other animals for that matter. He gave us dominion over the creatures he created and even entrusted us to name them – the biblical equivalent of entrusting them to our care. My encouragement this evening is that God cares for us more than we know. So even when we are feeding the birds, we are doing something that God considers important to His kingdom – taking care of something that is important to Him.
My prayer this evening is that you will continue to take care of the things that are important to God. That includes the poor, the marginalized and those who can’t take care of themselves. After all, we’re all in this together. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…