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Posts Tagged ‘trapped’

Have you watched a loved one or friend go round and round in circles? You want to help, but they won’t respond. In their anxiousness they keep circling over and over, making the same mistakes and trapped with no way out in sight.

courtesy of Church of the Holy Apostles

courtesy of Church of the Holy Apostles

In the church where I work, there is a meditation garden, called a Garth,  surrounded by a covered breezeway.  My office window looks out onto it. Yesterday, a chimney sweep flew into the breezeway. It circled around and around, flying up to the ceiling and back down over and over. After about three passes, I tried to swing my arms to get it to divert to the left and out into the garden’s open sky. But it just continued on it’s frantic course.  I realized, even  though my efforts were noble and kind, I made things worse.

I worried the thing might die from exhaustion or break a wing as it kept banging against the ceiling looking for freedom from it’s plight. But my presence made it panic even more. My good attempts futile.

Discouraged,  I went back to my desk. And yes, I prayed for the little guy.  Within a few minutes, a juicy bug or perhaps the spring-flower filled breeze coaxed the swift into the garden. It lifted its wings and soared to freedom.

Lesson learned. Sometimes the best we can do is pray and let God coax them out of their circumstances. He knows what will get their attention even when we do not.

And the coolest thing? God made those fragrant flowers or tasty bug long before the swift became trapped.  He knew when they would come in handy to entice the little bird at just the right time. Will he not do even more for those for whom we pray?

For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.     Psalm 48:14

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IMG_20140324_111347_318As I pulled into the parking lot, dashing streaks of bright blue and white, half-hidden in the shadows, caught my eye. Then I heard the screeches.

A blue jay had become trapped in the cage where the air conditioning units are stored at my building. She flitted back and forth in a frantic dance. The rapid rustle of her feathers cried out for help.Her mate cawed in panicked shrieks and fluttered from the tree limb to the top of the cage and back again. My heart sank!

How did that poor bird become locked in the cage? Then I noticed the cage did not reach all the way to the ground. A three-inch gap stretched between the grass and the bottom bar. Perhaps an enticing bug had lured the jay underneath the steel webbing. However, its instinct told it to fly, not crawl. Above the jay were tree limbs and sky within reach, yet not accessible. Repeatedly, she darted back and forth banging against the top corners of the cage. I crouched down and extended my hand through the narrow opening at the bottom. I tried to chirp like a bird, and then coo in soft calming tones. The blue jay stopped, cocked her head to the side, then took off in even a more frantic flight – back and forth, back and forth. I tried to open the cage, but the lock prevented me from doing so. I needed the key.

I called the maintenance warden. He had a key, and some lubricant to un-stiffen the lock from the effects of the outside elements. It only took a few minutes of patient coaxing. Click, The lock released.

With a screech of the rusty hinges, one side of the cage opened. But the bird crouched at the other end, crunched against the upper corner. Its beak propped open, It’s feathered breast heaved. Tiny black eyes widened.

The warden backed away.The bird could see him fully now. It chirped, turned, and flapped its wings. Suddenly, she flew, out and up to the safety of the nearest tree. Her mate flew after her. Sheltered by the leaves, we heard soft tweeting. The maintenance warden and I smiled.

Aren’t we humans like that blue jay? Something has enticed us into a situation. Unaware of the danger, we venture forth. Suddenly, we feel trapped, unable to find the way out of this mess. Our human nature clouds the ability to find freedom on our own. Yet don’t we try, over and over, only to get the same results? Anxiety sets in. We become frantic, banging against the barriers that separate us from the life we want. The barriers called sin. Perhaps friends are huddled on the outside,praying. They call out to God to come rescue us. Some may try to show us the way out. But they don’t have what it takes to convince us. Our doubts, helplessness, and the attitude of “I got into this, I can get out on my own” stubbornness blocks us from seeing the way to escape.

Only Jesus holds the key that can release me and you from the bonds of sin which have encased us. He alone can show us the way out. If you have a friend who is trapped in circumstances that seems impossible, realize that you are not capable of freeing them. You must call for Jesus to unlock the cage. Then, like that blue jay did to the warden, when they fix their eyes on Him, they can see His mercy has flung the doors wide, pointing the way to freedom. At last, to fly free.

 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:36

I found God’s message of salvation today in a trapped and frantic blue jay.

Where will you find Him today?

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