3 Facts for the Day

6 06 2013

1. We recently had a rather strange and sad incident at the Gowen house. We live on a wooded lot, so birds are a common visitor to our trees and bird houses. I’ve watched two different sets of baby birds in two different locations enter this world, and take flight once big enough. We recently had a fowl family take residence in an unusual place. They built a nest down inside a metal pole. We would watch the mother bird fly in and out of the pipe, delivering food to her babies. As usual, I thought it was really cute hearing their little chirps. There was a crack half way down the pipe, so we were able to see how far down the nest was located, but it wasn’t big enough to give us a glimpse of the little family. I didn’t think much more about it after the initial siting, but Ben brought it up yesterday. He proceeded to tell me that the birds had died, and he could smell them. He hypothesized that the babies, once grown, had been unable to fly up out of the pipe, and thus had met their fate.
2. The first comment that stuck with me was when he said, “The Momma was so intent on protecting them, that it ended up killing them.” The mother bird had chosen an isolated place to build her nest, far from any predator. It was so remote, the sun probably didn’t even shine on her hatchlings. They never knew the warmth of sunshine, the refreshing breeze that rides on the wind, or the freedom of spreading your wings and taking flight. Now hang in there with me. I’m not saying that if you protect your children, it will kill them! If that were the case, I’d have been in trouble long ago. But have you considered that if you isolate your child and don’t allow them to spread their wings, you could be hampering their flight? This is as much for me as anyone. I personally battle with putting my kid in a plastic bubble versus giving her a suitcase and sending her to Grandma’s for a month. As I’ve had the opportunity to watch Chloe’s little mind develop, I’ve loosened up a bit. As my first child, I always had a protective, eagle eye out for signs of threat or danger. I didn’t want other kids touching her, and germ-x was always an arm’s length away. As I watched her personality grow, I realized she needed interaction with others. As I watched her immunity grow, I realized she needed those germs and dirt. As I watched her motor development enhance, I realized she needed those scraped knees. As I watched her ability to reason unfold, I knew she needed the experiences she longed for, and even all those questions!
3. The second comment Ben made was, “Birds gotta jump off of stuff to learn how to fly.” Betcha know where I’m headed now. You have to let your little bird step to the edge and jump sometimes. I’m in no way suggesting reckless abandonment! I’m not going to let Chloe run out into oncoming traffic so she’ll understand that she can get hit by a car. No. But I’m not going to stay away from big cities with rushing cars in fear of her life. There comes a time when every parent will realize they can’t be there every second, that they can’t prevent every fall. If you try, you will drive yourself crazy, if you don’t fall out from mental, physical, and emotional exhaustion first that is. There comes a time when you have to hand over your child’s life to God and trust Him to keep them safe. For some reason, I looked at Chloe sleeping last night, and realized that one day she’ll be in a romantic relationship and get hurt. I’m not sure where that came from, and why it came to me last night, but it did. I hurt at the thought of her having a broken heart. I chuckled to myself and said, “You’ll have to help me with that one God!” Thankfully, we’re not at that place yet. I have some time. I know that it will come though. I can’t lock her in a tower like Rapunzel. I will have to let her walk to the edge, spread her wings, and take off. Hopefully the sunshine of the Holy Spirit in her life, the refreshing breeze of God’s peace, and the freedom of living in Christ will lift her up on wings like eagles and deliver her safely to solid ground. In the mean time, I’ll continue to intercede on her behalf and give her daily flying lessons as they come.
That is all 🙂

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