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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Snow Geese at Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area
Snow Geese

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"Do Birds Worry?"

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 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? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? (Matthew 6:25-27).

We drove through the Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area in northern Lancaster County the other day.  Some 180,000 snow geese travel through this area in their migratation every year.  At dusk they converge on the mountain lake and it's really quite a remarkable sight.

One observer describes it like this, "From far away, it could be a patch of water lilies gone wild, gobs of bobbing, floating whiteness atop a glistening 400-acre lake. Then you get closer and see the tiny specks of black on the edge of what are surely wings, being untucked by what is most definitely a pinkish bill. Then you hear the raspy, discordant honking, louder than an army of 18-wheelers, commanding your eyes to an upward blizzard of birds eclipsing the sky."

We obeyed a commandment of Jesus when we pulled our car off the road, and along with hundreds of other spectators, observed these birds who were nestling alongside the lake. Jesus told us to "Look at the birds of the air."  He was giving a teaching about worry.

I wonder if birds worry.  (I've wondered this about our pets as well.)  Worry is a condition that is present when trust is lacking and we become overwhelmed with a sense of present and future needs. I really suspect the animal kingdom merely lives with no cognizance of the future.  But it's anxiety about the future that causes us to worry, which really expresses a lack of trust in our heavenly Father. Jesus, in the same context of our daily text, said "O you of little faith" (Matthew 6:30).

What meticulous care God exercises to provide for the birds.  But consider how much greater value we are to God than these birds.  Jesus said so!  The One who has so marvelously provided for the birds of the air is certainly more interested in those made in His own image. Hope rises up within the believer as he contemplates the words of the hymn, "His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me!"

God's love for us is abundantly demonstrated in the way He cares and provides for His creation.  My prayer is that you will experience the wonderful peace of God today as you rest in the divine care of our loving Father. Worry can be such a detriment in our walk of faith and will rob us of the supernatural peace that is God's blessing for His children. Perhaps today you will want to personalize this truth by properly proclaiming, "I will not be afraid, for I am worth more than many sparrows."  And you sure are!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily Prayer:  Father, I want to look to the words of Jesus when He warns us of the perils that come with worrying.  It is common knowledge that worry can damage our health and  even lead to an early death.  It can consume our thoughts and taint our outlook in everything we endeavor to do.  It can hinder our productivity and affect the way we relate to others.  Help us to remember that worrying does not contribute to the solution but only creates other troubles.  The answer to our problems is to place our hope and trust in You by seeking first Your kingdom and Your righteousness.  In the process of seeking You above all else You bring perspective, direction, trust and supernatural peace into the most troubling circumstances.  Only You can make a roadway in the wilderness and only You can open a door that man has closed.  Nothing is impossible with You, Father.

Joyful reunionWe received this joyful photo from a young lady who grew up in the church we pastored in northern Pennsylvania. This is a reunion photo of her husband with their son following his return from Iraq yesterday.

Happy FaceYesterday's "Happy Barn" photo was not created using software. That was a real picture!  I don't know what material was used to make the happy face on the barn as we didn't drive up closely to look.

For further study:
Here's an online Bible Study about worry.

Today's song is an old hymn with a tremendous message.  "His Eye Is On The Sparrow" Audio  This version is from a Romanian Baptist Church in Dallas Texas.

Why should I feel discouraged?
Why should the shadows come?
Why should my heart be lonely,
And long for heav'n and home,
When Jesus is my portion?
My constant Friend is He.
His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me.

"Let not your heart be troubled,"
His tender words I hear.
And feasting on His goodness,
I lose my doubt and fear.
Though by the path He leadeth
But one step I may see.
His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me.

I sing because I'm happy,
I sing because I'm free.
For His eye is on the sparrow,
and I know He watches me.

One of our works in process is a website sharing hymn stories. It's stalled but Brooksyne has prepared this message as a means of encouraging others. It is available as a printable .pdf file.

Here's a brief article on the Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area.

An assortment of photos taken at the Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission; and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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