There is this bird …
A bird who loves to sing.
A bird who thinks 5:00 a.m. should be everybody’s wake-up time.
What should I do about this bird?
Shooting it isn’t an option, given that I have no night-vision goggles. I could curse it, I suppose, or open the window and try to scare it away.
But I don’t. I lie awake, listening to its raucous, repetitive morning song, and I wonder what it’s up to. Is it seeking a mate? Defending its territory? Boasting about its pre-dawn raid on local worms?
I have an advantage over my wife: I’m mostly deaf in my right ear, so I can turn my left ear to the pillow and shut out the audio intruder.
But I don’t. I find myself listening, imagining, absorbing a share of the early bird’s melodic joy.
When the sage who called himself Qoheleth spoke of the time “when one rises up at the sound of a bird” (Ecc. 12:4), he was complaining about growing old.
I’m growing older, if not yet “old,” and I do find myself rising at the sound of a bird, but I’m trying not to complain.
That bird outside our window is living out what the good Lord made it to be with every ounce of its feathery being — and its morning song challenges me to do the same.
Those who have ears to hear, let them hear.
[Photo by Tom Grey, from learner.org. I don’t know for sure if our avian alarm clock is a robin, but the song is similar.]
Professor of Old Testament at Campbell University Divinity School in Buies Creek, North Carolina, and the Contributing Editor and Curriculum Writer at Good Faith Media.