Saturday, May 24, 2014

Working Together

This is not the best picture I have of our bluebirds, but it is the only one I have of them together, so I'm using it to tell the story.  The male is bright blue with a deep rust breast standing at the front edge of the bird box while his mate is perched at the back.  She's what we might call a "pale" copy of the male.

These two birds fussed around our new bird box for more than a month, checking it out several times a day before deciding to build a neat nest of pine straw inside.  Sometime around the third week of April, five little blue eggs were laid and the work began of protecting the nest and preparing the eggs to hatch.  Then, in May, the tiny little birdies hatched and Papa Bird has been busier than ever zipping away from the box, finding food and returning to five hungry little mouths needing to be fed.

I have no idea what these birds do at night, but during the day I'll see the male watching over the nest from high in a nearby tree, or the edge of the rooftop or even bringing a morsel of food to the female when she was nesting inside the box.  I know these birds are working from instinct, but I still think it's sweet -- and it is a picture of working together toward a good end.

That's what we as sisters and brothers in Christ need always to aim for -- working together toward a good end.  And, what is that good end?  I would say  -- the furtherance of the gospel of Christ in reaching the lost, encouraging the brethren along the way, and growing in our personal relationship with the Lord.

Jesus Himself told us the two greatest commandments:  "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.  The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'  There is no commandments greater than these" Mark 12:30-31.  This imperative is so important that it is repeated in Luke and Matthew.  The first record of this command dates all the way back 3,500 years ago when God gave this command to Moses in Deuteronomy 6:5.

I am so thankful for my family of God at our church and for the women in our Bible studies.  We are able to encourage one another in the faith and to share our failures and concerns with each other.  Knowing that a sister has gone through the same thing you have -- or is even going through it at the same time -- that is uplifting.  You can cheer each other along on the path ahead.  Here's what Jesus said, "...In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world" John 16:33.

I love to see these little bluebirds working together for a common cause -- and I especially love to see brothers and sisters in Christ working together for a common cause -- the glory of our Lord and Savior and Father God.  It is a joy to be a part of the family of God.  As John wrote, "We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers [and our sisters too]" 1 John 3:14.

This bluebird couple are a good illustration of the verse in Ecclesiastes:  "Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work; if one falls down, his friend can help him up.  But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! ...Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves...." 4:9-12

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