There is enough there
Saturday September 11th 2010, 10:25 pm
Filed under: Life,Wildlife

(Ed. to add: I had a photo I was looking for for this post but stumbled across this one first.  When I shot it awhile back, it rather annoyed me that my straight needles in their holder had reflected in the window.  And yet.  Yesterday, it was striking to me that that reflection looked like the top of one of the Towers, with the needles as the cell-phone antennae that had been on the roof.  There/not there, with the peacemaking birds as the intended subject of the picture several months ago.)

Watching the various species that have been coming up to my porch and my birdfeeders the past 17 months, I’ve learned something:  each of the territorial types chases after newcomers of their own species.  There is plenty of food for all but when the level in the feeder gets low, I seem to get more, not fewer finches, as if suddenly they need to make sure there’s enough for them even if they have to fight to get to it.  They often do not all come back after I refill their supply; they just seem to need to know it’s there.

But do the towhees feel threatened by the doves? No. Do the doves feel threatened by the titmice or the adorable little Bewick’s wren that flips itself around by the tail?

No.  Even when they eat the same sunflowers or skitter around the same area: they only feel a need to establish dominance over the ones the most like themselves.

(Then there was that remarkable pair, the little junco feeding his ladyfriend finch that I got to watch over several weeks.)

We are all most like each other.  We need to get to know one another better for the fear of the different, of the unknown, to be replaced by our common human ground.  I loved this article (thank you Margo Lynn).

We are better than birds, and it is said that He knows even the sparrow in its fall. And I have to tell you that, outside their native European element, sparrows are absolutely terrible to those around them.  But He knows them too.

There are no strangers before God.  All He asks is that we live as best we can by love as He freely offers love to us, however we may understand the life He has given us.

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“There are no strangers before God” — and that statement should be pondered on and prayed about by every one of those folks that are so busy saying that they have the only answer —

what do you call your father? dad? poppa? father? — and wouldn’t he answer no matter what word you used?

so much more our Heavenly Father understands when we are speaking to Him — God, Allah, Jehovah — He knows our voice even so

Comment by Bev 09.12.10 @ 8:08 am

Birds are so much fun to watch! and you have more to see than I do.

I know that we have a fear of those different from us, but as you point out, they are not so different after all. Skin color? Shape of eyes? Different way to worship God? These are, after all, quite insignificant differences.

Comment by Don Meyer 09.12.10 @ 10:25 am

You spoke volumes with that last little paragraph. I missed church this morning, but somehow, I feel certain I “heard” the sermon I was intended to hear…

Comment by Channon 09.12.10 @ 11:00 am

So little to fear, so much to gain.

Comment by twinsetellen 09.12.10 @ 7:16 pm

Years ago, when my oldest son was still a toddler, my husband and I took him to the Boston Museum of Fine Art. Ralph was carrying him in a baby backpack. As we walked through a section of Japaness prints, we suddenly found ourselves face to face with an antique print of a couple in traditional Japanese robes out for a similar stroll, with their little boy, the same age as ours, on his daddy’s back. It’s fun to run into people like ourselves, but it’s pretty unrealistic to expect them to LOOK like us too.

Comment by LauraN 09.12.10 @ 7:56 pm

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