Tuesday, May 19, 2009
A couple weeks ago, a jenny wren decided she wanted to build her nest in an aloe vera pot that sits on a waist-high table in a corner of my back breezeway--not the brightest bird in the book. The twins, Wyatt, and I spend the majority of our mornings out there, so surely, she saw and heard us. Surely, she saw the large, orange cat who lay daily stretched out on the concrete as he guarded Wyatt and the twins. But still, she continued building, determined that this was the place.
I never saw her slip in and out, building her nest out of pine straw and dead leaves, so she must have worked afternoons and evenings. It was a masterpiece of nest building, each snippet woven together perfectly to create a cozy bed of hope for her future babies.
One night, there were two eggs. The next morning, there were five. Exciting. But still no sign of the wren. Then, two days later after we returned from the store, I saw the overturned pot and a couple small feathers on the ground. I knew she had instinctively returned to hatch her young only to find Jonah needing to fulfil another instinct.
When I uprighted the pot, three of the five eggs were still in the nest, but she didn't return. Days later, when I pulled the nest out to show Wyatt, I noticed the three remaining eggs were cracked and empty. I wondered if the mama wren had returned only to realize that there was nothing left for her there.
The whole story saddened me, especially the thought of that mother bird's hopes being destroyed. Sure, she's just a bird, but I've been there and have watched my hopes for motherhood end twice in miscarriage and many other times in just another failed attempt. I can't tell you how many times I, like her, made my nest, wove it carefully & lovingly together with tears, prayers, lots of rest, prenatal vitamins, and everything else I was supposed to do...only to end up just like this wren: childless.
Since then, God has blessed me with three beautiful children, and I thank Him daily for them. But especially around Vacation Bible School time, the thoughts of who I lost still tug at my heartstrings. Then, God has to remind me again of his Word: "Are not five sparrows sold for two cents? Yet not one of them is forgotten before God" (Luke 12:6).
God doesn't forget a baby wren that ceased to be. God does not forget any of my children. God does not forget me. I need to know it's ok for me to remember them even when everyone else around me forgets. I also need to be reminded that I'm not forgotten.
I saw the mama wren again this evening as the sun was setting. She lit in the crepe myrtle for a second, seemed to look longingly my way, maybe thinking of her lost nest or maybe contemplating a second nest there. Then, she flew off to do what birds do, perhaps to build another nest, hopefully in a better location.
I, as well, can't get too wrapped up in what is lost. I must go forward, trusting the Master's hand to guide my flight, to help me raise my young to be like Him...until He takes me home.
at 8:11 PM