For The Birds
By Phil Scovell
This weekend, I wasn't feeling too well physically. It was sort
of like the stomach flue or something. Anyhow, I normally seem to get
discouraged pretty easily whenever I get sick. Some of it is related
to the dozen eye operations I had 40 plus years ago because I used to
wake up sick as a dog and puking my guts up after every operation.
So, there's some healing there that needs to be done but fortunately,
I've already received a great deal of healing in that area but there
is more work to be done.
Anyhow, as the day wore on, I got to feeling better. I had been
thinking about what I was going to teach on this morning, Sunday, but
somehow, and for some reason, I felt my spirit telling me to switch to
another topic and that was about birds. I remember at the moment I
felt the change, I was walking near the bird cage where Chester, our
African Gray Parrot lives, and I heard him chattering and playing
around. Parrots of all kinds love to play. They, unlike people like
me, have no problem keeping themselves occupied in one way or another.
So, as I said, I was walking by his cage and his chattering made me
stop and think about him and other birds.
When I was a kid, I had a dog named Corky. I've talked about him
before in other articles and testimonies. He was a rat terrier and I
spent a lot of time with him. I used to always say to him, "Corky, I
wish I was a dog." One day my mother heard me say that and she asked
why I was saying it. "Because," I replied, "dogs never have to go to
school." I have a feeling there was a lot more behind my secret
confession but I'll save that for another time.
I was reminded of this when walking passed Chester and hearing
him playing in his cage. I sort of thought the same thing as when I
was a child about being a dog but this time, instead of wishing to be
a dog, I thought of being a bird in God's animal kingdom. I heard
myself saying in my thoughts, "Lord, why are birds so happy?" I was
thinking, why do birds sing, those that are song birds I mean, and why
do they chatter and play around and seemed to always be having a good
Several years ago, I watched a two hour program on a local
educational channel which was on birds. They claimed that there were
over 600 billion birds on the planet, sounds low to me, and 2800
Most of us probably never pay a whole lot of attention to birds
but I was thinking, this weekend, what it must be like for all the
birds in the world to awaken each morning and start singing and
chattering to the Lord. Millions of birds, billions, singing and to
whom are they singing? Well, they are for our enjoyment, that's for
sure, but what do you bet that God hears them, every one, more than we
personally bother taking notice.
In the late seventies, we lived in western Colorado. I was an
assistant pastor in a small Baptist church at the time. We lived in a
brand new house and had one child that was a little less than two
years old at the time.
One morning, about 5:30 or 6 o'clock, in April, I put on my coat,
after making some coffee, and carried my cup out on the patio. the
meadowlark has been just about my most favorite song bird for many
years. We lived in a very large valley and at the edge of town. In
fact, over our back fence you were considered out of the town proper.
That chilly mountain morning, as I stood and prayed, I had to
stop to admire the thousands of meadowlarks I could hear all across
the valley. One came within about 75 feet, or less, of the patio and
perched on top of a nearby telephone pole. He sang so loudly, in
unison with all the others, you almost had to cover your ears. I
tried singling each songbird out so I could count all those I heard
that morning. It was impossible. I've never heard anything like it
before or since.
As I poured out the small amount of coffee I had left in my cup
on the ground and pushed back the patio door, I realized that those
birds new more about praying and praising God than I did.
This weekend, when I asked the Lord why birds were so happy, He
instantly said, "Because they know me." Quickly on the heels of that
knowledge, I realized that birds know him as their Creator and so they
are happy. Additionally, they know Him as their Provider. You see, I
know these things myself, theologically speaking, but the birds know
it from experience. More than anything in my life, I want to know God
as that which He has created but to do that, you have to experience
it. How do you experience God's nature? I personally believe it is
accomplished through intimate prayer.
Have you ever seen a bird up on a telephone wire muttering to
himself and saying, "What a lousy morning this is. The whole day will
probably be as lousy as yesterday. That's the way life is for me,"
you hear him say, "nothing ever goes right for me. I think," he says
a little louder and with a little more forcefulness, "I'll just cash
it all in right here and now. I'm going to do a swan dive, a perfect
header, right off this wire into the ground. I'll snap my little
beak, my neck will break, and I'll be dead. I'm sick of life."
I hear little sparrows all the time around our house. No, they
aren't very pretty birds and they can't carry a tune in a basket. All
they do is chatter together. I've noticed though, when I listen
closely to their sounds, they seem to be happy. I bet, I just bet
you, that they are chattering about the Lord and His goodness and
that's why they sound happy. Of course, I could be wrong and they
could be belly achers and complainers like we are but somehow I doubt
"Oh," you say, "birds don't have anything to worry about like
me." Oh, really. What about their predators? Cats, squirrels, high
voltage power lines, hunters, kids with bee bee rifles just itching
for a kill, and a whole host of others that would love to have them
I've never seen a bird sitting up on my house saying, "I hate
life. Life just isn't worth living. It ain't rained in days. The
worms have gone so deep, I couldn't pull one out of the ground with a
pile driver. My stomach hurts I haven't eaten for so long. Not only
that, every single freaking bird feeder in the neighborhood has been
picked bone dry by them crazy squirrels. I wonder why God made them
dumb things any way. All they do is steal my food. Oh, my belly
hurts. God must not even care about me. I'm so weak, I can't fly
another inch," and with that, his little legs give out, he rolls down
the roof, off the edge, and is dead before he hits the ground; dead of
a broken heart.
Why do you suppose we don't hear birds talking and acting like
that? I'll tell you why.
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall
not fall on the ground without your Father.
30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
31 Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.
The word for "value" is a rather unusual word. One meaning is
that of a boat, a ship really, filled with grains, gold and silver,
and many other such goods which will be sold in a land far away. The
returning sailors will be rich men because they will have sold
everything in the ship to those who have no such provisions. Plus,
they will fill the same ship with new things from the far away land
which they will sell when they get home and make even more money.
This describes the Greek meaning of the word for "value" that Jesus
used to describe how much he values us. In short, the sailors are
blessed and experience provision coming and going. Sound like God to
Further more, He makes a comparison. He reminded us that the
Father is aware of ever single sparrow that falls to the ground.
Sparrows, in those days, were worthless and were sold for a tenth of a
penny or a tenth of a day's wages. Oh, so you are thinking that isn't
very much value? Remove all the birds in one second of time from our
planet and see what effect it has on our ecosystem. In a week, this
planet would be in big trouble if god removed all his precious little
birds. Einstein, reported to be the smartest scientist who ever
lived, supposedly said, "Watch the bees. When they die, we have about
four years left." He apparently knew the value of bees. Do you?
with the bees, we will soon die because of the absolute dependency
that mankind has on the pollinatazation of plants by bees. It isn't
much different when considering the birds. Jesus says, you are worth
more to Him than the sparrows. In fact, he says, He knows exactly the
number of the hairs on your head. Admittedly this is considerably
fewer for some of us but regardless, God not only knows how many we
have, He chooses to keep track of them. Try and figure that one out.
So, why did God make the birds? Because they know Him as Creator
and Provider. I wonder if you do. I know I do theologically but I
don't experientially. I want to experience the truth that the birds
know so I can sing and praise God with them every morning. I, too,
want to be as happy as they are because they know who they are and
they know who their Creator is. How about you? Do you know who God
is? More importantly, do you understand who He knows you to be?
Safe Place Fellowship
Mountain Time Zone
End Of Document
Go To HOME: SafePlaceFellowship.com