Free At Last, Free At Last…

A few weeks ago we discovered a little wren flying around in our screened-in patio. The poor thing had flown in through the opened door, but for the life of him he couldn’t seem to find his way back out. I saw him fly into the glass windows over and over again, hitting his head each time. I felt sure he’d eventually kill himself if he persisted using that particular method of escape. He’d also fly into the screen and hang on to it with his tiny claws–like he couldn’t figure out what was keeping him from being able to get to the other side. Lee and I both were trying to point him to the door, saying, “Come on, little bird. Fly this way–you can do it!” We got tickled at ourselves cheering for his escape as if he were a child of ours. We even tried scaring him towards the door-chasing him to get him closer to it, but all of our heartfelt efforts were fruitless. After maybe an hour, we gave up and went inside, resigned to the fact that the little wren would have to figure it out for himself or stay trapped.

It’s funny. The entire time I watched that bird struggle, I couldn’t help but relate it to our own human nature. “Isn’t this just like people?” I thought. “There’s a way of escape right there in front of us, but we keep bashing our heads up against the wall anyway.” I thought about my own personal struggles throughout my life: hard decisions I needed to make, sinful habits I needed to break, boundaries I needed to establish, and offenses I needed to forgive and forget. I thought about my stubborn refusal at times to let go of my pride and do things my way instead of God’s way. Or to blatantly ignore truth and insist I’d be okay regardless. Sometimes I genuinely couldn’t see the truth even though it was right there in front of me, much like how the wren couldn’t find the wide open door. They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, but I’ve slammed my own head against the glass hard enough & often enough, it’s a wonder I’m not walking around a bruised, bloody & broken mess.

One thing my 40 years of living has taught me thus far is that God’s love for me is real, and His word is a safeguard. Jesus really saves–He has rescued me time and again from the darkest, deepest pits. I can trust Him to protect me from my own self. I’ve been miserably trapped at times by my own blindness, ignorance, selfishness and stubbornness, and all the while God has faithfully beckoned me toward freedom. He’s used all kinds of people & all types of circumstances to help me find the open door to peace & joy. Such relentless, abounding, unconditional love He has for me, and for all of us! My heart overflows with gratitude.

Eventually the little wren found his way out of the patio, though most likely with a major headache. I didn’t see him fly away, but I was so happy to discover that he finally had. I knew he was back where he belonged–flying free among the trees through open space. Surely God smiles and all of Heaven rejoices when we seek Him, find Him and then run back to His presence. What glorious freedom awaits!

“He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection.” Ps 91:4.