daily devotional

I watched a bird meticulously build her nest for several days in our backyard pergola. Every morning I would go out to find she had added more to the nest until it was perfection, awaiting her precious eggs. Then a storm came through overnight and the next morning I found her perfectly constructed nest laying on the cement below.

Everything she had worked for was gone. The babies would be coming soon and she had no nest for them. Imagine the panic. Poor mama must have been stressed the heck out.

Have you ever felt that way? Maybe you even feel that way right now. You worked so hard, you were so close, then it was gone. You’re left wondering what you’re going to do and how this will ever be okay again. But honey, look at your track record. You have a 100% survival rate so far. You’ve made it through every single thing that has ever happened to you. And whether you acknowledge him or not, that was God getting you through. That was God’s provision. That was God’s blessing. That was God’s divine work in your life.

Let God’s proven provision bring you peace today. He has proven his faithfulness to you. He will care for you through this too.

After finding the fallen nest, I quickly noticed one bird flying through the air with a long piece of straw. There she was, rebuilding her nest. She was working quickly to prepare for the eggs she was about to lay. What she needed was provided.

That day, I saw God’s hand at work, caring for this bird. Providing what was needed, even when things had gone wrong. Why aren’t we able to see this better in our daily lives? Why do we assume the burden and stress when God so clearly demonstrates not only his ability, but his desire to care for us?

There’s a paragraph in my bible with the title “DO NOT WORRY”. The words are directly from Jesus so their power is life altering. His words are for you and for me, for today.

Matthew 6:26-27 “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”

The birds trust what they need will be there when they need it, even when disaster hits. We can too, and even more so.

Jesus says you are valuable. He says you are priceless. He says your heavenly father will make a way for you. And your worrying will not help anything.

Watch the bird once those eggs hatch and there are hungry little mouths to feed. She flies out of the nest searching for what is needed for that day. Food is needed to take back to her babies. If she sits in her nest and worries about how hard it will be to find a worm, are the babies fed? If she chirps away and sings a sad song to the babies about the stress of flying out once again to feed them, does she help anything? If she worries too much about leaving the babies and circling the nest like a helicopter parent, she can’t bring back dinner.

So, she trusts. Every day she trusts. She leaves the nest with confidence knowing the babies are hungry and she will come back with food for them. Daily trust for their daily provision.

And Jesus says, look how Papa takes care of that bird. Look how he has exactly what she needs as she goes out to find it. Look how she trusts and he provides. And won’t he do even more for you? Won’t Papa take care of you?

Oh my sister, why are you singing that sad song? Why were you worrying yesterday? Why sit and dwell on what is lost when God has given you the opportunity to do something today?

I slept with my windows open last night. The birds woke me with their songs this morning. Their joy is evident. They are happy to be alive. They were cared for yesterday, and they are preparing to go out and find what God has provided for them and their family again today.

Can’t we wake up like that too? Can’t our joy be evident?

Why do we dread the day? Why do we worry about things we cannot control? Can’t we trust the ONE who is in control?

In this same chapter of the Bible, Jesus teaches us how to pray.

This is how you should pray:

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name, (means to recognize God as holy and sacred, powerful and personal.)
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.

There it is. Give us this day our daily bread. Provide for today, God, we trust you. You have always made a way for us. You have always carried us through. You have been faithful and I have no reason to believe you would ever stop now. Just as the bird leaves her nest in faith she will find the food needed for the day, so will I. I will get up and do what I need to do. I will do all I can do. And I will do it singing a joyful song, KNOWING you care for me.

We’re coming to the end of April and typically I’m excited for the fresh clean start of a new month. But yesterday, I felt worn down. I felt overwhelmed by the pressure to keep the pace. I, along with many others, made a promise at the beginning of this month. I promised I would be faithful and show up every day with my best effort and come out of this better.

And I am. I am ending this month better than I began. I’ve worked hard every single day. I’ve pushed myself harder than ever before in my work, in my health, in my relationships and in growing. And honestly, the thought of doing it all over again to continue to grow is almost discouraging. Can I really do this for another month?

Gosh, isn’t that how the enemy works? He works in overwhelm! Recognize it! He twists what is good in our life and the progress we have made and tells us we can’t keep giving this level of effort long term. Pretty soon we’re discouraged and throwing our hands up declaring we’re not good enough.

HE IS A LIAR! He works in deceit. He twists the truth to steal our potential.

I will guard my potential. I will protect what God put within me. WON’T YOU?

You know how we best do that? We do what we can do today and stop worrying about tomorrow. You know what, I don’t have the energy to do this for another month. I don’t have the gas to keep this fire burning long term.

AND THAT MAMA BIRD DOESN’T HAVE NEXT WEEK’S DINNER EITHER. She has two things … trust the worm will be there today, and the push to go out and find it.

God, give me strength today. Guide me today. I receive and I will be faithful. The enemy will not get in my head and talk me out of doing what I can do. He will not overwhelm me with concern of how I can maintain progress in the days yet to come.

Satan, there’s no room for you here. You’re out of this nest.

My God provides for me today.

In the last verse of this paragraph titled DO NOT WORRY, Jesus tells me “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”

God gets my attention today. Not worry. Not the lies of the enemy. Not overwhelm. I will focus on what God is doing. I won’t worry about the energy to do it again tomorrow or the next day. I will use what he has given me today and do the best I can with it. And whatever comes tomorrow, God’s got it covered when it comes.

No sitting in the nest today singing sad songs and worrying. God has provided today, sing your song of joy, be happy to be alive, and go out and get what he has for you!