Are YOU Looking UP?
Not too far away from our home is a large park with a walking trail that bisects two golf courses. Every day hundreds of people travel up and down that trail, either on foot, or on bicycles, or mostly in golf carts.
That trail takes a path that which falls almost directly underneath some high power lines which carry current to hundreds of home in the area. There is a place on that trail where, if you are not careful, at a particular time almost every day, usually late in the afternoon or early evening, you will find a crowd of people gathered on park benches, in their golf carts, or just standing around. Every one of those individuals at those times will have their necks craned and looking skyward.
There, in the struts of one of the towers connecting the power lines, is a large bird’s nest, and not far away, you will see a pair of bald eagles tending their “home” and caring for their newly-hatched babies.
The crowd has gathered because even in Florida, which is the second most populous state in the nation for bald eagles, such sights are rare.
This is the third year we have seen these eagles. And every year we have experienced the same “traffic jam” under their nest! Every year, in order to see these eagles, we have had to look up into the tower.
Some time ago, I heard a fellow talking about his recent rafting experience out on the rapids of the Colorado River. He had just returned from a white-water rafting expedition which he had taken with several close friends and a tour guide/raft captain.
After some time on-board the raft, going through several “hairy” experiences where they were more concerned about the water being in the boat than they were about the boat being in the water, he turned to the young lady who was their particular guide for the trip and said, “I thought we were supposed to see some eagles on this trip. Where are the eagles?”
The question came while the raft was at a rather calm spot on the river, so the guide without saying a word stepped through the others on the raft and came to the fellow who had asked the question. She took his face in her hands, and pulled it upwards so that he was gazing into the sky.
With that she said, “My friend, if you want to see eagles, you have to look where the eagles are – UP!” While that was tremendously embarrassing for the fellow, it was also a tremendously insightful statement.
And what is true for people looking for eagles on raft journeys is also true for us, no matter what we are looking for. If we want to find such things, we must look where they are!
It doesn’t matter what it is we are seeking – whether it be peace in life, a good job, a committed marriage, a wonderful family – no matter what it is we are seeking, we need to look where those people or things are!
We oftentimes tend to just simply let “fate” take its course, and not do anything about what we are seeking on our own. We marry the lifelong girlfriend, just because we have always “been together.”
We don’t do anything to better our selves in our jobs, not because we like our jobs, but because we are just not willing to get the training or education necessary to do it.
We’re constantly seeking after those things that will bring fulfillment and peace in life, and then complain because in this “rat race” we just never seem to be able to find that elusive and exclusive thing called “success!”
Friends, the fact is, if that comes anywhere close to describing your situation, you are in desperate need for a raft guide to take your face by the chin and tell you, “If you wanna see eagles, you gotta look where the eagles are – UP!”
The Apostle Paul was the one who said, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13) Jesus Christ Himself made the statement, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5) God Almighty told Abraham that “The Lord will provide” even in seemingly impossible circumstances (Genesis 22:14).
I continually am amazed at how much we look at life’s circumstances, and generally, for those who are not faithful church-goers, and even for some who are, we tend to blame God for our lot. We see the situations that we find ourselves in, and we think that “the man upstairs must be looking down in disgust on me again.”
We pray a faithless prayer – “God, don’t you care that I am in trouble here?” And God simply smiles upon us, and says, “Just trust me!”
But in our own independent ways, we turn away from Him, and will not look where the eagles are! And then we wonder why we never see any eagles!
By the way, that fellow in the raft began to look up for eagles after that, and it wasn’t five minutes before he saw his first one! God does provide!
Look to Him for that provision!
Chuck Tabor is a regular columnist for the News Journal and a former pastor in the area. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.