In the fall and again in the spring, cedar waxwings migrate through our area. And every fall and spring, I get excited by the prospect of their visit. I walk looking up when I hear their gentle peeping, craning my neck to find them. They are such elegant, sleek birds, made all the more special because they aren’t permanent residents here.
Yesterday, the space outside my office window was aflutter with them. They flew back and forth from tree to tree, feeding on the abundant holly berries in our church courtyard. In our prayer room down the hall the hollies cover the window and I stood watching for almost half an hour as the cedar waxwings flew in and out of the bushes, feasting on the berries. I thought about the passage from Matthew where Jesus uses the birds as his example of how God provides what we need:
Therefore, I say to you, don’t worry about your life, what you’ll eat or what you’ll drink, or about your body, what you’ll wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds in the sky. They don’t sow seed or harvest grain or gather crops into barns. Yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are? (Matthew 6:25-26)
When you really stop and think about cedar waxwings or any bird, it’s hard not to be amazed. They know what they need to survive and thrive, and, if we don’t mess things up for them, they have food and shelter. Many are decked out in incredible colors and patterns, and if that were not enough, their songs are their praise to the One Who provides for them.
May birds remind us all of God’s abundant love for us and for all creation. May we in turn thank God by trusting God and by caring for all that God has made and entrusted to us. And may we rest in God’s provision, taking a cue from cedar waxwings to feast on the life God has given to us.