On my run this morning this little bird followed me chirping in the shrubs along the path for about a mile. Half a mile later an owl was hunting. I was overwhelmed with thankfulness that I a. Was running by myself b. Could run and c. Was in such a beautiful place. For the last 16 years birds have been a reminder to me of Jesus' words in Matthew "Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns and yet your Father in Heaven feeds them. Are you not much more valuable then they are? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?"
I am amazed how often in the midst of an anxiety producing situation I notice or hear birds chirping. And they always remind me that God is trustworthy. In the last few years Greg and I have made some deliberate and risky decisions to seek answers to some questions surrounding God's presence here on earth. We quit jobs, sold belongings, traveled half way around the world. We took the risk believing God said God would provide and with a community of people behind us saying they were with us.
God has provided. Not always in the ways I'd expected. And not without an experience of sacrifice on our part and difficulty. It has frequently felt hard but for the most part good. As I look back there were plenty of times I felt anxious and afraid that this risk we were taking was going to fail. But four years later God is still providing and in some ways that are above and beyond what I could have asked for and imagined. I didn't need to worry. Or be afraid. It added nothing to my life.
As as I was folding laundry yesterday I realized how most of it was given to us by others. The kids and my clothing is generally hand me downs. But not crappy ugly ones. Cute clothes. Perfect clothes for this season. God provided above and beyond through our community. Here in fife Scotland everyone golfs and the kids and I all have golf bags because people have given us ones they don't use anymore. Amazing sets of clubs. Above and beyond.
As as I relinquish control, risk and trust that I matter to God I am amazed at what God does. Letting go is hard. Risking is hard and it definitely comes with sacrifice. But God is good and God is here. And anxiety really does nothing. So as I enter a new year of life I want to trust more, continue to risk and continue to live life looking at all God is doing. Because even in all the out controlness of life the birds are chirping, reminding us we do not need to worry-God is here and God loves us.
Ali Millikan, Author
I love Father, Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit. I love my husband and kids. I believe that God is in the room with us; that hearing God's voice is for everyone and that it will change your day to day reality.