As I listen, I hear the Spirit whisper to my weary heart, "You have what you need, just like birds have what they need to fly."
Photo of hummingbird, with permission of Flickr Creative Commons User:John Morgan
On Saturday night, our family watches a DVD on the flight of birds. Our dog Bailey lounges comfortably over half of our sofa, while my husband and I snuggle on what is left. Our girl sits on a faded armchair.
We learn about all the ways a bird is designed to fly, from the time it begins to develop in an egg. For example, a bird's skeleton must be light yet strong to fly. We learn how a bird's feathers, even those peripheral, help it ascend and descend in flight. A bird's wings are hinged like a pulley.
(You, my friend, are designed by God with as much specificity for your life. No one has the exact same mix of gifts and life experiences as you.)
Hummingbirds fly differently than other birds because they hover as they extract nectar from a flower. Unlike other birds, hummingbirds can move their wings (thanks to flexible shoulders) backwards in a figure eight, so they can fly backwards.
Seeing how a hummingbird's tongue changes as it feeds gives me a new appreciation for how they feed. I can't wait to see them fluttering by the Mexican sage's tall purple flowers, or by the tiny pink Penstamon blossoms this summer.
As I reflect on God's wonderful design of birds, and how they have exactly what they need to fly, I sense the Spirit gently nudge me.
Photo used with permission of Flickr Creative Commons User:Phalinn
Despite how I may feel sometimes, God has given me what I need to accomplish what He calls me to do. I may think I need to be more high-energy like someone else, but it doesn't appear to be what I need for my life plan. Yes, I exercise and try to eat healthy, but I can't change my baseline is not high.
And that's okay.
I can forget God's grace is available to me and He doesn't shame or condemn me (Romans 8:1) for my weaknesses and feelings.
Sometimes I forget God has designed each person with different gifts (e.g., knitting, leading, writing), unique personalities, varying energy levels, and interests.
One is not better or more valuable, just different. Our world may value one over the other, but God does not.
God didn't design me with a hummingbird's stamina and strength, because I am not a hummingbird. Likewise, He didn't gift me with incredible energy like others, because that isn't His plan for my life.
Yet God promises His grace is sufficient for my weaknesses (2 Corin. 12:9-10).
As God has gifted each bird differently for its unique flight and life, so God has uniquely gifted each of us with all we need to live our lives for His glory/to reveal more of His character (Ephes. 2:10).
Unlike birds, I can resist how God made me and try to fly a flight other than the one God intended for me. I can take on a good cause or an activity, but if it is not what God calls me to do with my life, then it is harmful.
And I must quiet so I can hear and listen to God's quiet voice of love and truth. He is the good Shepherd who knows each individual sheep in His flock.
God calls me to be my truest self (the One He designed), and He does not drive me to be someone I am not. I feel strongly about this issue because for most of my life, I tried to be someone else to please a key loved one.
I don't have it all figured out.
Sometimes the loud voices urging busyness because productivity = value, can drown out God's voice calling me to humbly accept how He designed me in love and wisdom. Then I fight to be quiet, to still, and to listen.
I call out to God: I believe, but help my unbelief in the truths of Psalm 139:13-15.
Dear friend, I pray we can know and trust we are going to be okay, because God has given us what we need to fly our unique flight.
What helps you to fly the unique flight God has called you to fly?
What enables you to listen and hear God's voice of love and truth?
Thank you for being here.
P.S. As I listen to Julie Manning share her story of suffering with a heart condition, I share it because it goes well with today's post.
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Linking up with encouraging Holley Gerth for #coffeeformyheart with "You're going to be okay because..." and with Nacole for this week's #concreteword "Listen."
Congrats to Holley on her latest, best-selling book, You're Going to be Okay.Check it out, you will be encouraged.
Sweet and gifted friend Laura Boggess, So delighted we met.
Also Linking with encouraging Jennifer Dukes Lee, So happy I got to hug you in person.
And encouraging friend Lyli Dunbar's Thought Provoking Thursday
Wonderful Jen Ferguson