I don’t know about you, but I like to sleep!
You get to dream and it's safe and secure and warm. I lay my head down each night and, if I’m lucky, I might actually take the time to reflect on a glimmer of one or two things that happened during the day.
Waking up can be so abrupt and cold.
I would rather be oblivious, thank you very much! And so often I find myself sleepwalking through life.
Days blend into weeks flow into months. I un-consciously go through the motions, living in a cocoon of self-absorbed thinking,
I eat without tasting. I work with no zest. I read the same page over and over. I meet people whose names I won’t remember after taking 4 steps away from them. I aggressively listen to people talk and don’t hear a word they say.
(This is a guest post by Kevin Beatty, a really gifted writer I met on another blog. Please show him some love in the comments and give him a follow on twitter)
I’m alive….but I am not awake.
“I have spent my days in stringing and in unstringing my instrument
The song I came to sing remains unsung to this day”
So I find that a loving God will, at times, help me to wake up. It is almost always painful. It is always worth it.
There once was an eagle that had a problem.
His problem was that he was born an eagle. All he knew were eagle things. Soaring high. Magnificent eyesight. Eating whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted.
You know…… eagle things.
He never knew how the sparrow or the quail or the turkey felt. He didn’t understand or particularly care how it might feel to be limited, to work very hard for existence, to compete.
Young eagle, though he was a nice fellow and never meant anyone any harm, flew around believing that everything he had was rather humdrum. After all, he was born an eagle and he sort of deserved it all, didn’t he?
Then, one day, an older wiser eagle, observing the un-intended arrogance of his nephew, decided it was time to teach a priceless lesson.
While he slept, Elder eagle clipped the youngster’s wings and pushed him of the rocky pinnacle where he nested.
With this quite rude awakening, young eagle tumbled to the ground. Fairly battered, he stood up and flew back to his mountain peak.
Well….he tried to fly back. To his surprise his clipped wings would simply not allow it!
Muddled and not just a little scared, the eagle wondered what on earth he would do now! “How in the world does anyone see where they are going down here? It’s all too close!
And good heavens, how do I eat?”
He found that by observing the hard working sparrow, he could find worms in the ground. Watching the quail and the turkey, he learned all about digging for insects and grubs.
It was hard and it was work. It was Horrible!
And he changed. The soaring flights and world view he had taken for granted became something valued and missed and precious. He looked on “lesser” birds with humility and even some admiration.
After all, who worked the hardest to live? Who needed to be wily and determined and steadfast?
Funny thing about clipped wings. They grow back.
So it happened that one day, while struggling and pumping, young eagle was able to fly to the tallest pine. Soon to the lowest mountain slopes. And eventually, with extreme effort, he made it back to his aerie in the sky.
Where elder eagle was waiting. “Did you miss me?” he said. “Not so much”, replied the younger, (but wiser), eagle.
“But I did miss the angle of the sun up here. I missed the wind from the Northeast ruffling my feathers. I missed seeing the lake on the horizon.
“I ached to soar, longed for the dive and the kill, yearned for the echo of my cries against the mountain peaks”
“These are things that I missed”
“These are things that I did not even know that I had”
“Lesson learned” said elder eagle, and glided away.
God allows life to clip my wings at times. (There are days I feel plucked clean). I have tumbled roughly down a few mountainsides.
But ya know what?.....Any joy or peace or humility I may have attained in this life, seems to find its genesis in those painful and seemingly un-just experiences.
So thank you God.
Those experiences woke me up. And with each awakening, I finally began to sing the song You sent me to sing. Lesson learned.
Have you ever felt yourself sleepwalking through life?
Also, what are some ways God has allowed life to clip your wings?
(This was a guest post by Kevin Beatty. You can check him out on www.twitter.com/TheDadBeatty)
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