Friday, December 10, 2010

What Parrots Can Teach Us

This morning around 7am, as I was wrapping up my morning walk, the flock of parrots that now inhabits our valley took to flight to greet the day.  The sky was suddenly filled with their joyful cacophony of squawks and screaks as the 30+ of them  took to the cool morning air.

I watch them every morning that I get to walk, marveling at the their brilliant green, their maneuvering as group.  I hear their "noise" and wonder how they could ever learn to mimic human speech.  Mainly, I just enjoy the freedom they have as they fly on the winds over the busyness of the city.

As I watched this morning, they seemed to be waking and launching into the day with joy.  After flying around as a flock for about five minutes, greeting the new day, the flock began to break up--groups of four, six and eight birds, peeling off--I imagine--to go to their various feeding sites.  They always break off in even numbers...because, as we learned in natural science class somewhere along the way, parrots are monogamous--they have one mate for life.  So, they break off in even numbers, always.  Those small groups then begin to break off as well...into groups of two, off to face the day.

As I came to the end of my walk, and the sound of rejoicing parrots was fading, I realized what a model they are for us.  They begin their day in praise, all together in the strength of their numbers.  Then, as the needs of the day call to them, the break off into groups--four, six or eight.  And, finally, the take off, two-by-two.  Don't they reflect how we are to be as God's people??  We're to gather in numbers at some point during the week (in North America, usually on Sunday) to greet our God and lift our voices in praise.  Then, we can break off in smaller groups...even down to we walk as disciples, side-by-side in the daily grind of life.

Well, this morning, I give thanks to God for those noisy, screechy, beautiful parrots that raise their inharmonious voices to the day...and I add mine to it, thanking God for His goodness as I prepare to face the day.

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