Saturday, August 12, 2006

Fly baby, fly

Fly Baby Fly

The most bizarre thing happened yesterday. I'm working on Chapter One of a new book for 20-somethings called The Woman I Am Becoming.

Anyway, I told the story of how we are designed to fly and I used a bird as an example, how a bird is frightened when it leaves the nest for the first time and how it doesn't learn how to fly until it takes that first step. It was a poignant glimpse of nature and how fear can keep you from discovering who you are.

So I'm feeling pretty great about this analogy until I go outside last night and I see a baby bird on the driveway. His beak is wide open in fear and his little wings are flapping like crazy. Why? Because he's cornered by two cats.

I was talking to my niece Kimberly and I freaked out. She thought something bad had happened when I shouted, "oh, poor baby, no!". I explained that I needed to save the baby bird and hung up. I ran to the driveway and I shooed away the cats, but now the bird was scared of me.

I get that. I'm 100 times bigger than the baby bird. He doesn't know if I'm giong to hurt it or help it. All he knows is that he's landed in deep doo doo and here's yet another large being trying to capture it.

It hopped under the car and so did the cats. I laid down on my belly trying to get to this bird. I smell oil and I'm sucking up dust from the driveway, but all my efforts only frighten the bird. I finally reach to try to grab it before the cat does and it tries to attack me with its beak, so I back off and wait.

I never did catch it, though I tried everything. Eventually the cat got it and trotted off with it in its jaws.

I was totally bummed by this. Stupid story, I thought. How in the world can I use that analogy? The stupid bird should be scared because it tried to fly and look what it got. I went back into the house prepared to cut that part out of my book completely.

And yet this morning I suddenly saw this in a whole new light. I see how hard I tried to help the bird. I see how fear pushed it into the mouth of the enemy, instead of allowing me to gently place it back where it belonged.

And instead of changing my story, I realize now that the little bird was intended to fly, but sometimes you have to let something bigger help you when your back is against the wall, and then you'll fly again.

I'm sorry if this sounds insane. After all, it's just a bird, but I know that there have been times that God has asked me to take a chance and fly and I've hesitated for a number of reasons, most founded on fear. I've learned to trust God. I've learned that he won't let me down, but that doesn't mean that I won't face difficult times or people, but I can turn to him.

I know that there have been times that God has reached for me, and for others. He's put himself in dirty and awkward situations as he's reached into the dark places to find us, and we can turn to him and let him help or not. That's our choice.

Just my two cents.

Suzie Eller, Real Teen Faith


b said...

Hey - God works in mysterious ways,
His wonders to perform.

T. Suzanne Eller said...

I love the way God speaks through the simple things.

Julie Garmon said...

This hit home with me, Suzie. I'm preparing to teach at the North Texas Christian Writer's Conference in September. Spreading my wings, I guess. I refuse to give into fear (I don't like to fly for real, what if nobody comes to my classes,etc). I'm discovering God's help through others as I plan.

Thanks for the incredible reminder of how He sends helpers, just when we need them. Great little birdie picture too!