Saturday, May 24, 2014

Pearls in May, #5: Songbirds

The events of the last month have felt a bit like a stampede of elephants trampling my sense of well-being. Whenever elephant stampedes invade my life, I have to work twice as hard to notice the good gifts that pervade every difficulty. So this month, in an attempt to work my gratitude muscles, I'm collecting and posting a gift a day. Soon, I will have a written series of little gifts strung together like a strand of pearls!

To read the introductory post to this series click here.

My ambition to post a pearl a day has been thwarted by my computer's decision to crash earlier this week. The bad news is also the good news in this situation: the bad news is the computer is only four months old ("this sort of hard drive crash after just four months is an anomaly," said the tech guy); the good news is it's still under warranty because it's so new.

Thankfully, I've hung on to my old computer and can use it as a stand-in, although it is about as capricious as my car. It works and then it doesn't and then it does and then it doesn't. But it's working right now, which means I get to post a weekend pearl!:

There is a grove of deciduous trees standing tall and quiet outside my window. When the ocean breeze blows through them, they can't help but quiver and dance with joy. And when the squirrels scurry up their trunks, they can't help but offer the furry critters the fruit of their limbs. And when the sun shines through their branches onto my deck, I can't help but curl up in a chair in the flickering patch of light.

Most days I soak up the warmth, close my eyes, and listen to the birds sing their joyful melodies. From sun-up to sun-down they sing. When dark clouds cloak the hillside like a burial shroud, they sing. When the sun dries up the morning dew, they sing. When the wind rips fiercely through the trees, they sing. When there's a break in a torrential downpour, they sing, their flaming orange and yellow breasts quivering with joyful, endless song.

Sometimes, after most of the birds have fallen asleep, I awake in the middle of the night, my mind racing with busy thoughts that quickly chase away sleepiness. And so I whisper prayers and quote Bible verses to quiet my mind. I listen to my breathing and hope that the rhythm of my chest rising and falling will lull me to sleep. And then, through my open window, I hear the cheerful strain of a lone songbird undaunted by the darkness. 

I suppose this is why I've grown to love these birds: they remind me that life is too full of gifts for us to keep quiet. In the bright of day there's the sun and the sky and the citrus groves popping with color, just begging us to sing joy to the world. And in the darkness of night there's the cool, damp air and the pearly glow of of the moon about which we can sing. Even the cloudy, stormy, inky moments contain a morsel of grace, and so we can choose, in every situation, to sing a song of thanks to the Giver of good gifts.

Image credit:
© by scj

1 comment:

  1. Computer-related problems can be quite frustrating, especially if you have important things to do. It's good that it was still under warranty when it broke. At least can have it repaired at minimal costs. That, and you can still retrieve your old files from it afterwards. Anyway, how’s your computer holding up?

    Cordia Remsen @ RBSMN