A Thousand Steps

Every now and then I find a scripture verse, poem, or part of a devotion that jumps off the page and seizes my attention. This morning I had one such moment.

If there are a thousand steps between us and Him, He will take all but one.
But He will leave the final one for us. The choice is ours.
Max Lucado

Do you ever feel that a thousand steps are separating you from God’s embrace? I sure do! At times He seems so far away, especially when I have stepped away from His plan for me.

Whether this separation is intentional or not really doesn’t matter. God will always take those first 999 steps to draw us closer. Why? Because He loves us! But ultimately, it is our choice to close that final gap. We can continue wandering aimlessly, or allow God to lead us back to safety.

After pondering this thought for a while today, a problem that had been troubling me for months no longer seemed so overwhelming. In fact, the solution became quite clear.

There is freedom in letting go and entrusting God to reveal His plan, even if it takes 1,000 steps.

😇😇😇

I found Max Lucado’s quote, in Everyday Grace, a collection of 60 devotions compiled by Jill Olson and published by Ellie Claire. This lovely book caught my attention on Amazon right before the holidays, so I added it to my Christmas list. It was a special gift from my daughter, and I am savoring every page and illustration!

Feeders and Feathers

Today has been a wonderful day of relaxation with my family. My brother came for the afternoon and we all sat down and enjoyed a delicious pot roast, followed by warm slices of wild blueberry pie. All the while, we watched as dozens of birds stopped by to visit our feeders.

I wish I had thought to turn on the HDR feature on my iPad, but I’ll share a few of the photos I took through our sliding door. My favorite photos show the newest arrivals . . . at least two pair of Eastern Bluebirds!

The first pair arrived at the bird bath and large feeder mid-week. My husband put out some suet pellets and dried mealworms. That was a good call because another pair showed up shortly thereafter, and they have been frequent visitors ever since.

The suet has been a big hit this week, with five different feeding stations for our feathered friends. We have seen Downy Woodpeckers, Carolina Wrens, a Red-Bellied Woodpecker, and the bluebirds too.  Our thistle feeders have been busy with House Finches as well as American Goldfinches with their duller winter plumage. A sure sign of spring will be when the males begin showing patches of their beautiful bright yellow feathers. I will be watching!

During the brief snowfall on Saturday morning, we counted SEVEN pair of Northern Cardinals! Some of them visit the sunflower feeders, but most seem content just foraging for seeds and cracked corn on the patio. They were joined by a dozen or more Dark-Eyed Juncos and a pair of Mourning Doves. And of course the squirrels. For the most part, everyone gets along until a Bluejay arrives, or a flock of European Starlings crashes the party.

Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. — Matthew‬ ‭6:26‬a

I know there are mixed feelings in the birding community of whether or not we should feed backyard birds. There are strong opinions on both sides, and obvously, I fall on the bird feeder side. From my perspective, it’s a win-win for me and the birds. I provide food, water and shelter for these beautiful creatures, and they provide me with endless hours of year-round enjoyment!