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His eye is on the sparrow

Unexpectedly on my way home from work, I was witness to a minor tragedy.   Because our mailbox only closes part way, an enterprising sparrow was able to get into it and build a nest. The mailman continued to deliver the mail even as, over the course of a few weeks, all manner of twigs a…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
Unexpectedly on my way home from work, I was witness to a minor tragedy.
 
Because
our mailbox only closes part way, an enterprising sparrow was able
to get into it and build a nest. The mailman continued to deliver
the mail even as, over the course of a few weeks, all manner of twigs and leaves began to fill our
mailbox.
 
It had become one of the highlights of my day to get the mail each afternoon. Inevitably as I slowly opened the mailbox, the frightened sparrow came flying out.
 
But yesterday, the mailbox was tighter than normal – almost closed shut. As I opened it, there was none of the usual commotion. Upon closer inspection, there was momma sparrow, dead inside. Apparently, she’d been trapped and couldn’t get out.
 
A pang filled my heart. I had grown fond of her and her unorthodox ways. I was rooting for her as she added more and more stuff from the forest to her abode.
 
I reached in to examine her nest and looking inside, saw five eggs. This further compounded the tragedy of the whole thing. 
 
There’s an old hymn entitled “His Eye is on the Sparrow.” I like it (especially as song by Tanya Blount below). It’s reassuring that God cares for little birds in the same way I do.
 
The song’s lyrics are inspired by Jesus’ pre-field preparation talk to his disciples in Matthew 10. He’s telling them not to take anything and they’re worried sick. And he’s saying, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”
 
Life is precarious. As that little sparrow showed me, it can be cut short in a second. I’m glad that God holds my life in his hands.  If you feel tempted to worry or to fear, maybe this song and the words of Jesus will help.

Comments (7)

  • Thanks. This song really spoke much to me. His eye is on the sparrow. It put a new faith in to my heart. God bless you. Joshua Thomas

  • I feel the pang too, reading your story. It does feel like a small tragedy. But is it small to Him? If He speaks of His care of the bird, and we feel the pang, what does He feel? And if He says we are WORTH MUCH MORE, what are His emotions towards us and our well-being?

  • What did you do with the eggs? How sad that is.. I am thankful God loves us more than the grass of the field and the sparrows. However He loves and pays attention to every detail of His creation. What a sad story.

  • Beautiful observation. I remember singing this hymn as a kid. “Why should I be discouraged…His eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me.”

  • The eggs are still there in the nest in the mailbox. I was hoping that maybe the daddy bird would show up and take over. But he wasn’t there this morning.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



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