Leaving the Nest
by Kimberly B. Southall

Not long ago, a wren built a nest inside my brother’s workshop.  She chose a spot she liked on top of a tarpaulin lying on a high shelf.  She worked diligently preparing her nest, verbally chastising my brother as he sat working nearby lest he bother the fruit of her labors.

The days passed and soon the baby birds made their debut.  The mother bird continued her work, now carrying food to her hungry offspring.  She still issued verbal warnings for my brother not to bother her babies.

As the chicks neared their time to leave the comfort of the nest, the mother bird made fewer feeding trips to the nest, thus motivating the birds to leave the nest.  As the birds became hungry, they didn’t hesitate to cry out in protest.  But that didn’t change the course of events.  Some mother birds literally push their young out of the nest, forcing them to fly.

Jesus, our Savior, prepared a way for us to receive salvation and eternal life.  And he established a kingdom (the church) for us.  He supplies our needs and also feeds and protects us spiritually through many avenues, including prayer and the study of His Word.  However, Jesus also gave us a command, the great commission:

16Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.  17When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted.  18Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  19Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you . . .” (Matthew 28:16-20 NIV)
Our Lord clearly expects us to share the Gospel and plan of salvation with everyone else.

Oftentimes, we Christians are like those squawking baby birds.  Oh, how we selfishly cry for Him to keep giving and giving without our doing anything in return.  But just as the mother bird with her young, Jesus knows what is best for us.  We must leave our comfortable pews and get out into the world.  Sometimes Jesus allows troubles to come our way in order to oust us out of the nest.  And some of us, who are more stubborn, need a fairly strong “push.”

Take the time today to reflect upon your own life.  Are you fulfilling the great commission, or are you still “sitting in the nest,” crying for more and more?  Are you afraid you’ll crash to the ground if you “try to fly”?  Fear not, for when he issued the great commission, Jesus assured us:

“. . . And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20 NIV)
What are you waiting for?  Get out of the nest and fly!

Copyright © 1997 Kimberly B. Southall.  All rights reserved.

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