These days the choir of birds outside my window start warming up about 4:20am. By 4:40am, all birds are present and the concert begins in earnest. Every bird sings loudly and in perfect pitch.
Not wanting to miss any of the concert this morning, as soon as I heard the first bird warming up at 4:20am, I hopped out of bed.
By 4:45am – shaved, showered, and holding a steaming cup of coffee – I settled into my chair at my desk beneath the window. Without question, I have the best seat in the house.
The concert continues full bore until 5:15am. As the darkness gives way, some of the feathered choir take a short break, before continuing with a bit less volume.
Frankly, I love the first 15 minutes of the feathered concert the most. That’s when the choir loudly beckons the sun, telling it to raise its head, join in their singing, declaring the glory of God and giving light to the world. Day after day, the sun complies, giving the birds exactly what they asked for as it rises at one end of the heavens and by end of day, sets at the other end.
Jesus mentioned birds in his famous Sermon (Matthew 5-7):
“Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?”
This morning as the world turned from dark to light, and the concert subsided, the choirmaster hopped up on my window sill and asked me to give the morning prayer.
“I’d be honored,” I said.
Standing to my feet, and lifting my hands heavenward, I prayed:
“O Lord, deliver all of us from the fear of the unknown future, from fear of failure, from fear of poverty, from fear of bereavement, from fear of loneliness, from fear of sickness and pain, from fear of age, and from fear of death. Help us, O Father, by your grace, to love and fear you only. Fill our hearts with cheerful courage and loving trust in you, through our Lord and Master Jesus Christ. Amen.”
Some mornings, as I have sheltered-in-place in these recent weeks, that prayer evades me and I start borrowing trouble, worrying about things I cannot change.
This morning as the feathered choir sang unabated, the Lord said to me:
“Do you hear those birds?”
“Well of course. Aren’t their voices just beautiful.”
“Mimic them,” said the Lord.
So, I lifted my head, turned my palms upright, put a slight smile on my face and prayed:
“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and wisdom to know the difference.”