Kind words are short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless. Mother Teresa

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A Little Think

True Refreshment

It looked like a convention under my bird feeder last week when the temperature hit 81 degrees. I even refilled the birdbath so they could splash, fluff up, fly away, and swoop down for more. The local weather forecast indicated this was a false alarm for spring and the cold would return. We'd have several warm days, just enough to get the birds and daffodils excited, and then a drop of 40-plus degrees. Another typical fickle spring! But then it was a few weeks early on the calendar.

I smiled, wondering if I should warn the birds not to be fooled. Maybe I should tell them not to put all their eggs in one nest, but they wouldn't understand. I knew that even without my warnings, the birds would be fine. Their marvelous mystery of managing has fascinated people since the beginning of time. It may baffle us, but God knows how it works. He designed them to eat right without nutrition labels, to go south when north winds blow, and to flock together with birds of a feather.

He cares even more for us! Jesus' friend Peter wrote "Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7). That's advice worth heeding right now as we hear news of layoffs and businesses going belly up, as we watch our savings downsize and our expenses increase. Feeding on that news can make one anxious! But there's more biblical wisdom to help: "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat (or drink), or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they?" (Matthew 6:25-26)

We need to be wise, of course, about living our lives and managing our money. But God invites us to feed, like the birds outside my window, as often as we need to at His feeder, His Word. We can dive into the Bible and bathe in His love as we feed on His promises. The weather may go up and down in our everyday lives, but God offers us daily strength through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. He gets specific in the Bible about how to live and think and act. Whatever we face is covered in His Word.

I won't bother the birds with the forecast. I can't communicate with them unless I become a bird, of course, and I definitely don't see that happening. All I can do is provide them with food and water. I thank God He didn't simply offer food and water to us after He created us. He went much further; He communicates with us. He didn't just try -- He became one of us! As Lent leads up to Easter we think about the extremes God went to in saving us from ourselves and from our sins through His Son's mighty work on the Cross. Of all the things that pop up this spring, Jesus' resurrection from the tomb is the ultimate victory over sin, death, and the power of Satan. Awesome!

For the Christian, God offers the mysterious, forgiving, life-giving food of the Lord's Supper and the cleansing water of Holy Baptism. I hope to see you at His "feeder" as we bathe in the sunshine of His Spirit. Have a little think about that!

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