A few weeks ago, two doves began flying in and out of the entryway to our house. We soon discovered they were making a home in a branch-like wreath on the wall next to our front door. As the male bird brought nesting material to the female, she diligently started building a nest in the top of the wreath.
When nest was complete, the female stayed there. The nest was up high, so we couldn't see the eggs, but we were certain they were there, due to her presence.
Initially, the mama Dove was afraid of us, but she soon became accustomed to our presence. Then, it was only when strangers approached that she'd fly into the front yard until the "danger" passed.
We have been watching the dove every day. We learned that the male dove is supposed to relieve the female bird at night. We haven't seen the "changing of the guard," so to speak, but perhaps the birds have exchanged places while we were unaware. Still, it it amazing how the mother bird stays on the nest all day. Occasionally she changes position, facing either the street--or our front window.
It is amazing, isn't it, how God provides for His creation? He gives the birds an innate understanding of what to do, for no one teaches them how to build a nest, how long to sit on the eggs, or how to teach the babies to fly.
The Dove's eggs will hatch within fourteen days, which should be any day now. We can't wait to hear the peep of the newborn "squabs" (as my husband says they are called), and see their tiny open beaks, beckoning for food. Then, in the two weeks that follow, they will grow big enough for Mama Dove to teach them to fly. If all goes well, they will succeed in departing the nest as intended.
The Dove's presence has been a lesson in patience. If the mother dove didn't remain on the nest, the eggs wouldn't hatch. They need her presence--and warmth--to do so. Then, once hatched, she must have the patience to feed each one, and the patience to teach them to fly.
Good things take time--and can't be rushed. Its a reminder for the things that apply to our lives, too.
Thanks be to God for His awesome, stunning, and miraculous creation--and that includes you and me!
"Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?" - Matthew 6:26-27
"But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or ask the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind. - Job 12:7-10
Photo: N. Johnson
"Just a minute!" (Pause). Okay, I'm back. Thanks for waiting. Whew. I'm always behind. Do you ever feel that way?
If yes, join the club. Life is busy. (Two four-letter words. Feeling silly; pun intended).
When I think about it, hardly a day goes by that I don't say "Just a Minute" or hear someone else say it. Personally, it doesn't help that I'm chronically late for....uh...well...life. Is there something I need to do? Yes...but, can you wait a minute? Or, when my husband asks if I'm ready to go somewhere, I reply, "Just a minute!" (Then, he waits patiently in the car while my "minute" lapses into several sixty-second segments).
Time. It's one of our most valuable assets--but also one of the most abused. We feel good when we use it wisely, don't we? But not so good if we waste it; that is, when we're supposed to be doing something productive.
We'd like to make up for time, but we can't. There's no adding to it. And it can't be bought; the wealthy and famous have no advantage. We're all allotted the same twenty-four hours in a day. (I think God's math is pretty fair).
Years ago, as a busy mom, I wanted to set aside time to pray every day, but wasn't succeeding. Mornings were too busy and if I waited until bedtime, I'd fall asleep in the middle of the prayer.
I made everything too complicated. Prayers didn't need to be long. So I simplified. What if I took just one minute out of my day to pray? Would that work? It did work, and I called it "The Quiet Minute." It was do-able. It was simple. And it was enough.
Soon, the one-minute prayer became a habit. Mornings too busy? No problem. Too tired at night? Not an issue. I'd fit prayer into the in-between times: while waiting to pick up the kids from school, when taking a shower, or while driving to work.
Soon, I didn't have to say "Just a Minute" to prayer. Instead, I could use that minute to say the prayer.
I haven't completely quit using the phrase "Just a Minute;" however, I learned to put other tasks into perspective. Big project or to-do list? Break it down into smaller parts. Take one step at a time, and before you know it, you'll have completed "miles" of steps.
The phrase, "Just a Minute," doesn't have to be a cry for extra time. It can take on a new meaning if you are using that minute for a good purpose!
God is patient and kind--and always ready to listen to your prayer--no matter the length!
"He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end." - Ecclesiastes 3:11
Photos courtesy of Vecteezy.com
Through God's Word!"
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