Thursday, March 19, 2009

Kindly Feathers

So often the Lord gives us glimpses of the profound in the commonplace.

Lilies of the field to remind us not to worry about being clothed; birds of the air to remind us that He will feed his children (Matthew 6:26-29). Examples that extend far below the surface and impart wisdom in the everyday.

This week, the Lord has been speaking to my heart about having kindly feathers. And recognizing that God's wisdom will always manifest itself in kindness, protection and gentleness.

"The wings of the ostrich wave proudly,
but are her wings and pinions like the kindly storks?"

For she leaves her eggs on the ground, and warms them in the dust;
she forgets that a foot may crush them, or that a wild beast may break them."

Do we mommies wear "kindly" feathers? Or do we tend to leave little ones "in the dust" so to speak? Oh, the hidden treasures found in the Word of God!

Although there may be some ostrich mothers that protect their young, God is pointing out what researchers have since had to discover: "the sun is sufficient for incubation in tropical climates"1 and in those places, mother birds may shirk their duty to sit on their own nests.

The Lord points out that there are other dangers this ostrich mother is not considering when she chooses not to protect her young with her own body. There is a level of nurturing that protects little ones from their enemies.

Are we, as mamas, willing to sacrifice our own comfort to shelter our children physically from harm? Even simple examples such as keeping track of little ones in public places (do they go into bathrooms themselves?); taking the time to observe them in play and listen to their conversations come to mind. I cannot tell you what that protecting these little ones will look like in your family, but I can encourage you that it is our duty. Potentially crushing or even destroying enemy will always be near.

May we put on the kindly feathers of protection.

Some of my least favorite statistics indicate that one out of every three to four girls and one out of every six boys will be sexually assaulted by the age of 18... and yet these experts in the field know that the number is actually much higher. These numbers indicate only the reported cases.

I know this is something none of us want to talk~ or even think about~ but in order to remove ourselves from the ostrich example even further, we as mommies cannot afford to hide our heads in the sand.

The number is one in 3. Consider~ when are your children unprotected? Are they watching movies with other kids alone in dark rooms? Are they playing behind closed doors or at a neighbors house unsupervised? These are things to prayerfully consider.

"She treats her young harshly,
as though they were not hers;
her labor is in vain, without fear,
Because God deprived her of wisdom,
and did not endow her with understanding."

~Job 39:13-17

Do we treat our children harshly? I know this can be a struggle for all of us. I want to be more gentle than I am at times. Sometimes it is difficult not to say things the wrong way, or to speak before we hear out a matter. It is a challenge for all mommies at some time or another. And none of us will get through this experience with perfect "marks."

But if it is our habit to do so, we must be wise enough to recognize this as a flaw and go to the Lord for transformation. He is our help in trouble. He will answer your hearts cry for wisdom... every time. He is a friend that sticks closer than a brother (or sister). He is our ever present help.

If we do not repent of this habit, we imitating the foolish ostrich who is told her labor is in vain; and that God has deprived her of wisdom.

"So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom."
~Psalm 90:12

"But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy."
~James 3:17
"Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls."
~Matthew 11:29

May God richly bless you as you lead those little hearts home!


1 Cyclopedia of American Agriculture by Liberty Hyde Bailey


  1. Thankyou Rebecca for the encouragement in this post to really shelter our little ones as best we can. I forever have this in my mind, and is one reason I long to have my girl home with me. I know that even though her school is excellent, filled with Christian teachers and lovely children, things can still go wrong. I am very aware of this and ask God's protection over her each and every day when she is at school. May we enter a homeschooling phase soon!

  2. Thank you Saminda.

    I will be praying for that situation too.

    I hear too often of situations where children we know have been violated in "harmless" scenarios with neighbors and close friends. It is heart wrenching.

    So glad it is something that is in your thinking so that you can train her how to respond ahead of time when you are not able to be with her. Your sweet relationship with her and that type of training is another form of protection that you can provide. : )

    Love to you.

  3. This is a timely post. We have just dealt with a situation with one of our teens, a situation I trusted completely. Guard them, keep them will never regret those choices!

  4. Thank you for sharing that Kathryn.

    That is such a helpful word.

    As our children grow we get tempted to think this is no longer an issue. That we no longer need to protect them from their flesh.

    Love and prayers.

  5. My dd and I were just discussing sleepovers today and why we don't do them. A college friend was, in jr. hi, molested by the brother of a friend she was visiting over night. I spent the night with a friend, and her uncle tried to kiss me.
    While we can't be too careful, we also must work diligently to make OUR home a delightful one. One they want to stay in, find joy in and bring their friends to. Of course, there's protecting in our own home, too.
    Thank you for sharing, as always.

  6. Sleepovers. Thank you. Another important area to protect against.

    Amen~ to speak with kindness and to make our home a delight is essential. : )