I have a sweet friend that loves to feed the local bird population. She has birdfeeders hanging from her balcony and protruding from the ground below. We often have text exchanges about the birds collecting in her yard and conversations about how to attract more birds when the visitor numbers slow.
I was inspired by her enthusiasm and truth be told a little friendly rivalry was rising – how many birds could I attract to my yard?
So armed with the knowledge she had imparted to me, I added two feeders to my backyard. They were directly below the dining room window, well within view of watchful eyes – will they come?
Then one by one, finch, bluebird, dove, and a random covey of quail found the feeders – a full-blown obsession was conceived.
Each morning, Titus (our fur baby) and I make the trip to the feeders, fill each to the brim, and scatter a little on the ground. During the day, my husband and I keep watch on our guests. He often comments on the number of birds. Yes, the obsession has captured him as well.
One morning I was standing at the window, a warm cup of tea in hand. I noticed the doves. They are frequent visitors. They congregate under the feeders, scratching, searching for seed. I know they are ground feeders but today it struck me. They searched for food, moving from feeder to feeder looking to the ground. While all along, hanging above their heads were full feeders! As the wind caused the feeders to sway, seeds would fall to the ground. But, what they wanted, what would meet their needs, provide satisfaction was right above their heads. All they had to do was look up.
As a younger woman, I had dreams. Things in my life I wanted to accomplish. I moved from goal to goal, accomplishing some, experiencing devastating loss with others, but constantly striving – one more goal. Scratching around life, looking for the one accomplishment that would meet my needs, feed me, all the while looking to myself for satisfaction.
Please don’t misunderstand what I am saying, dreams are not bad, goals give us motivation. But when we depend on these things to define us, to give us purpose and value, we are like doves – never looking to the true source of real satisfaction.
The Bible tells us in the book of Matthew,
“If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.
Matthew 6:25-26 – The Message (MSG)
This is a beautiful reminder if we are God-worshippers we don’t have to scratch and search for something to fill us. All we need to do is look up. He promises to care, provide, and love us. And that brings true satisfaction.
Psalm 139 – New International Version (NIV)
For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
1 You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. 2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. 3 You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. 5 You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.
7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? 8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” 12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.
13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. 17 How precious to me are your thoughts God! How vast is the sum of them! 18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of saw when I awake, I am still with you.
For additional reading – Psalm 139:1-18 NIV – For the director of music. Of David. A – Bible Gateway
Take a few minutes to consider the following.
- What or who are you looking to for satisfaction?
- Do you believe God can meet your needs? If yes, why? If no, why not?