The Nest

Do you find the word nest interesting? I do. Appearing in a wide variety of phrases, it easily connects with the idea of home. These phrases bring images of feathered friends as well as our own lives as parents. I thought it would be fun to make a list.

  • Love nest
  • Nest egg
  • On the nest
  • Nesting
  • Hornet’s nest
  • Empty nest

I recently noticed a bird gathering supplies to build their nest. Twigs it would weave into a home. This lead to memories of various nest observations from the past. Tiny blue eggs one day, newly hatched chicks the next. Baby birds with their mouths wide open, clamoring for tiny bites of food from their mom. Little chirps silenced only by the care and protection of parents.

Memories of deserted, empty nests followed. Sometimes seen in trees or found on the ground. Both sad and beautiful at the same time. Intricate weaving still intact. Leftover fuzzy feathers stuck inside the twig walls. Reminders of the former flurry of activities. Now quiet.

Much like parenting…

What brought on these notions concerning nests? It certainly could not be the fact that our youngest graduates high school in less than a month. 😉 We feel the empty nest rapidly approaching. So before our flurry of activities has come and gone, here is a little poem from this mama bird.

Lessons From the Birds

“I know every bird in the mountains…” Psalm 50:11

On a recent road trip, I noticed a bird hanging in mid-air. Located just above the trees, its wings fluctuated rapidly up and down, side to side. This feathered friend appeared to be in an unstable situation, possibly caught in a wind current.

As I watched the bird, assuming it was struggling to find balance, I thought of a tightrope walker. I could just imagine an invisible string pulled tight underneath, its tiny claws grasping to hold on, fighting for control.

How often might I be described in this manner? “Have you noticed Kelley lately? There’s so much happening, she appears to be holding on for dear life. She seems a little scattered and frantic. I hope she’s ok.” Probably more times than I’d care to admit. 😉

Our drive continued, the bird no longer in view, yet I thought of it once again. Was it possible the bird wasn’t struggling after all? Perhaps it was simply resting in the current for a moment, allowing the wind to move its wings as it wished. This thought provided a different perspective. One which brought thoughts of security and rest.

Maybe there’s a simple lesson to be learned from these contrasting views. What if I apply both perspectives to my own life? When the strong winds come, and they will come, I will have two choices.

One-I can fight against them, grasping for control, trying to find balance on my own tightrope.
Two-I can relinquish control, allowing the winds to move me where they may, trusting that God will be there with me when I land.

Viewing my own life in this manner might also influence the way I see others. Perhaps making me less likely to analyze and more likely to offer help.

“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can anyone of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Matthew 6:26-27

I wish I’d been able to watch that bird awhile longer. What happened next? How long did it remain in that current? Did it eventually soar off to new heights? I guess I’ll never know.