This weekend I went into my “secret place” and I have been enjoying one of my favorite pastimes and that is gardening. I think it is important to have something that you can do alone that will allow you to unwind and to be at peace and gardening is that for me. I love to garden, it relaxes me and it is also good exercise. But most importantly I know that it feeds the nurturer in me. I take delight in planting a seed, watering it and then watching it grow and bloom. And I am thankful that I am able to see the fruits of my labor as I work from my home office as it is directly in front of my garden. I have planted flowers in front of my office window that attracts butterflies, hummingbirds, and dragonflies and they reappear each year with splendor and glory. Watching the butterflies and hummingbirds bounce from plant to plant is an absolute joy for me while I work. Well, it seems that each year we also have additional guests, two birds. You see during the spring season for five years these birds have taken up residence in the awning over our front porch. Its amazing to watch them fly back from their summer vacay to prepare a nest for their new batch of babies in the spring. Watching them each year knowing without hesitation that they have a place of refuge to begin new life inspires me and provides such revelation that guides me each year.
I began to relate to the expectation of refuge of these birds, as I have that same sense of expectation in my own life. I am sure you too can relate to the lesson here. This birds know just where to go each year to receive their blessing of shelter, protection and shelter, and they show up with a sense of expectation of being protected and refuge to start a new beginning. They know that they what Jesus discussed in Matthew 6:25-32,
“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.”
You see the birds are not worried about where they are going to sleep because they know that this house is faithful to be just what God created this place to be, a sanctuary for His Spirit to meet those who are in need of refuge. "Dwelling place" may be translated "refuge" or "abiding-place" and provides the thought that God is our abode, our home. There is a fullness and sweetness in this as our home is dear to our hearts, although it may be the humblest of homes; it is special to us as our God blessed us with this home and we have fought with diligence to remain here through the ebbs and flows of life, and we dedicated it back to Him to do with as He pleases. This dwelling place chooses to serve the Lord in all we do and its because of Him in whom we live here. It is at home that we feel safe: We shut the world out and dwell in quiet security. So when we are with our God we fear no evil. And this is what I think these birds feel. My mother said when I inquired to her why we can't get rid of our houseguests, she said once they know that the place they have taken shelter is safe, they will continue to come back to rest and safely birth the new. Isn't this how we feel about our Father?
He is our shelter and retreat, our abiding refuge. Are you allowing him to be that for you. Are you feeling at home with Him so that you can take your rest before you start your new journey; it is there we find repose after we have wandered. He has offered himself as our dwelling place of refuge. He loves us with an everlasting love, may you find your refuge and rest in Him.
The eternal God is your dwelling place. - Deuteronomy 33:27
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