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Posts Tagged ‘#ecclesiastes3’

As I opened the blinds the quarter moon shone clearly. A further glance and sure enough, the stars were shining brightly.

A clear moon and stars in this Pacific Northwest part of the Earth can only mean one thing … the temperatures are dropping.

The house feels the chill this early Sunday morning … yet, I cannot bring myself to turn my light therapy box (a great help these past two dark winters when SAD (seasonal affective disorder, better known as it’s dark outside and I am solar-powered … help!).

The light of the moon and the stars brightens my mood naturally.

Yet, this clear sky, it comes at a cost … it is cold outside. The meteorologists are predicting an arctic airflow coming from the North East … meaning bone-chilling cold as well as winds that deliver a chilly punch.

It reminds me of Ecclesiastes 3. The list of life’s opposite realities. This list of a time to … is a list created by the reality of living in our sin-filled world. This is the list that God did not create, was not the life that He designed, but the reality formed in the pit of sin. He did not create us to die, to war, to weep … yet these are the dark and stormy nights of life as we know it.

Verse 11 of that chapter reminds of his love for humanity,

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart …”

Which reminds me of Augustine’s well-known declaration, “O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”

In Longfellow’s poem, The Rainy Day, he describes (so very well … I think he must have lived it) the struggles of the cold, and dark, and dreary (day, how) it rains, and the wind is never weary. The final verse of his poem, though, reminds us of the reality of these dark cloud seasons :

Behind the clouds is the sun still shining;
Thy fate is the common fate of all,
Into each life some rain must fall


We may currently live in the dark and cold, but when these cold winds blow in, the moon and stars shine all the brighter … reminders to us of what is to come, of the hope that still exists.

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I cannot even remember how we discovered it, but my first view of it will stay with me always.

On a sunny springtime day, peeking through the floorboards of our second story deck, at three perfect blue robin eggs, snug in their nest.

The only thing better than seeing them, was watching and listening to our kids as they caught their first glimpses of the little bird family.

The momma robin hovered in and around, under and over her littles, constantly reminding us of her protective maternal presence. We tried to give her space in her season of nesting, though the temptation to peek at the progress of the eggs was near impossible for our family of five.

We scanned the internet for information pertaining to the gestation of robin eggs.

What we didn’t read about, were not prepared for, was the sad day that started with a fluttering, squaring momma robin, fighting off the evil Steller Jay.

I remember our animal-loving daughter coming into the kitchen after standing on the deck and giving heck to the Jay, in support of the robin family … now reduced to one whole egg and two mounds of shells.

Then, when the school day came to an end, and our kids went out to look through the floorboards, anger mixed with sorrow, as the realization that the jay had gotten number three.

Our anticipated joy in nature halted by … nature.

This well-feathered story makes me think of the third chapter of Ecclesiastes:

There’s … a right time for everything on the earth:
A right time for birth and another for death,

A right time to plant and another to reap,
A right time to kill and another to heal,
A right time to destroy and another to construct,
A right time to cry and another to laugh,
A right time to lament and another to cheer,
A right time to make love and another to abstain,
A right time to embrace and another to part,
A right time to search and another to count your losses,
A right time to hold on and another to let go,
A right time to rip out and another to mend,
A right time to shut up and another to speak up,
A right time to love and another to hate,
A right time to wage war and another to make peace.”

I do not always appreciate how life goes. Yet, when I look back I see that the hardships, the sorrows and the defeats are intermixed with the delights, the joys, the wins.

Last week, fifteen or so years later, we made an unexpected discovery … a perfectly constructed nest, nestled into one of my hanging planters. Inside were four eggs, white with reddish spots.

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The tiny little momma bird was vigilant in staying with her family, with short jaunts out of the nest to care for herself and check the premises for enemies.

As I led a friend to the nest, earlier this week, my heart sunk as there were no eggs. Instead there were … feathers. As I moved the leaf on a plant I saw four eager, wide opened beaks opened up as high as they could reach.

Now there’s still a neighbour cat who is thinking that we are providing fast, feathered food. So the threat of nature is still in the air.
the threat of nature is always in the air

But, maybe this is a time for birth, a time for life.

birds

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