JESUS – “Therefore, I say to you, don’t worry about your life, what you’ll eat or what you’ll drink, or about your body, what you’ll wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds in the sky. They don’t sow seed or harvest grain or gather crops into barns. Yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are? Who among you by worrying can add a single moment to your life?” (Matthew 25-27)
Rebekah and I will never cease to be amazed – and blessed by – our church family’s enormous capacity to love. Over the past month and a half we’ve been inundated with cards, showered with prayer, cheered with well wishes, encouraged by visits, sustained with food, helped by acts of service, and humbled with gifts (see articles about the repaired driveway, and the abundant yard work).
Saturday evening, for example, good friends showed up at our door with a gourmet meal, and Rebekah was strong enough for us all to sit down together and enjoy an hour of great conversation. Then, a few days ago, Wake Forest Presbyterians Jim and Sue gave Rebekah the gift of birds.That’s right, birds! Jim knows how much Rebekah enjoys watching the birds at our feeder, and so he hand crafted a couple more, specifically designed to attract the particular species we have been hoping would stop by. Jim did all the woodwork, he included the correct seed recipe, and then he even assembled a squirrel-proof stand.
Over the first few days nothing much happened. Then, probably as the result of some report getting out on the local bird grapevine, Saturday morning the lid came off, and we were suddenly the most popular bird breakfast buffet in this part of Wake Forest! Not only did we see our regular collection of visitors, but then the woodpeckers we’d been looking for came by, plus the Eastern Bluebirds, as well as several other new friends.
Yesterday – in just over the span of twenty or so minutes – I counted at least 15 distinct species, all beautiful in their own way. They came in waves, and before the weekend is out I’ll likely have to get some more food.
I’m not sure what it is that gets to me about birds. Maybe it’s their beauty, maybe it’s the fact that they can fly – but they always seem to point to some truth about God. Why would they possibly be so beautiful if they weren’t created by a being defined by love, and invention, and goodness, and playful whimsy, and deep imagination?
So enjoy these photographs, then fly to church and worship this wonderful, amazing, beautiful God!
GOD – “To all wildlife, to all the birds in the sky, and to everything crawling on the ground—to everything that breathes—I give all the green grasses for food.” And that’s what happened. God saw everything he had made: it was supremely good. There was evening and there was morning: the sixth day. – Genesis 1:30-31
Christmas garden kingdom of God photography The Church Uncategorized bird feeder bird photography church members Eastern Bluebird gifts of love love North Carolina The Church Wake Forest wildlife photography woodpecker
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.