He Cares for the Birds

That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?

Matthew 6:25-26 (NLT)

A couple of months ago, I noticed that an old nest on our back porch was occupied. It was so sweet to watch the parents flying in to feed their chicks. Their mouths all agape as they cried for their next meal. I was sad to see them to go.

It made me think of how God cares for all His creatures. He cares for the smallest bird, to the most majestic lion (Psalm 104:21). As marvelous as these creatures are, they were not made in the image of God as we are (Genesis 1:27). Jesus died not for them, but for us. It is us who have the privilege of calling Him Father; of having an intimate relationship with Him.

If God cares enough to provide for the little sparrow, how much more you, beloved child of God? He knew your every worry and need before you even spoke them (Matthew 6:8). If an earthly father knows how to provide for his children, how much more your perfect Heavenly Father?

Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

Matthew 7:9-11

I know there are so many worries in this life. The world seems to be spinning out of control. You wonder, “How will I pay my bills? How will I put food on the table?”

Yet allow yourself to be still long enough to hear the voice of your Father. “Do I not care for the birds of air? Are you not so much more valuable than they? Was I not the One who crafted man from the dust and woven you in your mother’s womb? Am I, who created the greater, now incapable of providing the lesser? Yes, I know your every need, My Child. I will always take care of you.”

Therefore, give your heart and your every concern over to Him. Don’t allow your heart to be bogged down. God cares for you (1 Peter 5:7), and will provide your every need in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Focus on seeking Him, His kingdom, and His righteousness first (Matthew 6:32-34). Wait patiently for Him, giving thanks and praising Him for what He has done, is doing, and will do.

Work with all your heart, as for God and not for men (Colossians 3:23). But do so in dependence on Him, knowing that He is your Heavenly Father who cares deeply for you. He knows your needs, and will provide them in His own perfect time and way.

Take a moment to reflect on God’s faithfulness. Recall how He provided for the men and women of the Bible. He provided Abraham an heir. A way through the Red Sea for the Hebrews. A Savior to die for our sins. Remember how He has proved Himself both in the lives of fellow believers, and even in your own life. He who was faithful then, will be faithful again.

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The Unfurling

This is the unfurling—
where my bones sing and ache:
of grace, of joy,
of hope, of new life.

A light pierces my rib cage,
warm and sweet,
as His voice speaks,
Just wait and see
what I’m about to do
.”

(I can breathe freely now.)

Walk in Grace

Yes, my dear, we all have a past. Skeletons in our closet, things we would rather keep hush-hush, hidden away under lock and key. But through the grace of our Savior, we have the hope of a new future: the brightest light in the dimmest of darkness.

You see? He has made you new. He has made you His. You are a new creation. You are not who you once were. You have a new identity, and it is in Christ. Walk in that. Walk hand in hand with Him, until we’re all together in eternity.

In His Hands, He Holds Oceans

In His hands, He holds oceans—
pushed and pulled by gravity,
only going as far He would tell them.

The waves tremble and bow.
His voice
(awakening dawn,
and yanking dead men from their graves)
causes the mountains to crumble,
and fall in their midst.

His voice stills the sea,
and the raging storm in me.

Still, I tremble and fear.
I sink, head under water.
I drown, water in my lungs,
gasping for air.

But He speaks
in the gentlest of whispers,
and in the smallest of voices:
Peace, be still.

He caught me, He caught me.
Breathed life into my lungs.
Cradled in the arms of the One who names
and embraces stars and galaxies
and ancient redwoods.

If in His hands, he holds oceans,
won’t He hold me
(safe)?

If the waves only go as far as He sends them,
will He let me go without direction?
Will He let the storm destroy me?

Is the storm greater
than the One who holds the whole world in His hands?

I am but a drop;
but He is the whole ocean
(I in Him,
and He in me).

In His hands, He holds the oceans.
He held the day, before the day was.
He holds me.

He walks on
the stormy seas of my heart.
He bids me come,
beyond the shore,
and into the waves.
Into the unknown.

He says,
“Hold My hand.
Don’t be afraid.

“Look to Me.
Don’t be afraid.

“I won’t let you sink.
I am with you.

I tremble, but I know.
How can I remain at the shore
when there’s an entire ocean to explore?

Why fear the ocean
and not the One who made it
Himself?

I tremble, but I know.
In His hands, He holds oceans.
(He holds me.)

“Tomorrow,” He says,
we’ll walk on water.”

Reach Out

Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

Romans 12:15 (NIV)

The other day, as I was scrolling through notifications, I realized how blessed I was. That is, I realized what a blessing community is. It’s nice to know that you aren’t alone; that there are people encouraging you and cheering you on.

For a shy introvert like myself, it’s easy to get trapped in my own little “bubble.” Reaching out—the dreaded vulnerability—is not something that comes easy. But something God has been teaching me is that we weren’t made to do life on our own. We need God, and we need one another.

We, both as human beings and Christians, have the privilege of sharing our lives with one another. Indeed, as 1 Corinthians 12:26-27 says, “If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.”

Of course, that’s not to imply that this is easy. Bearing pain that isn’t your own is, in itself, difficult and painful. As is seeing dreams come true while yours remain unfulfilled. It can bring about feelings of envy and bitterness, can’t it? If we want the ability to rejoice with those who rejoice, and mourn with those who mourn, we need the Lord’s help. We need grace.

So, ask Him. Ask for His heart. Ask to see through His eyes. Bring your pain and bitterness to Him every time you feel it creeping in.

Look outside yourself. Where do you feel He is leading you? Who can you celebrate with today?

Where do you see hurt and struggle? You may be having the time of your life, but is your friend struggling? As God has compassion on us and stands with us in our pain, so He wants us to follow His example. Instead of making excuses, or seeking our own agenda, we should be bearing each other’s burdens (Galatians 6:2). He says:

Comfort, comfort My people.

Isaiah 40:1

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4

As we are to be salt and light, so we should be salve for a hurting world. By our joy, love, and compassion, we can shine the love of Christ to a world that desperately needs it.