When I least deserve them...






For one whole week, I worked on an article that I could never make work. One whole week.

I took my laptop with me everywhere. I wrote through the blues, medical tests, the cat throwing up on top of the refrigerator, a cell phone {our only phone} that most of the time won't work inside the house, the return of warm and muggy weather, and half the lights on the Christmas tree going out. 

I'm wondering if the best and easiest thing to do with the tree is to take all the ornaments off and start over. That's exactly what I did with that article.

I deleted the whole thing and started from scratch. 

It's pathetic whining - all of it, I know. On a scale of 1-10, my complaints rate a big fat 0, and I'm embarrassed to admit them. 

Yesterday I left the comforts of my air-conditioned house {still whining} and stood outside in the hot and muggy backyard to talk on the phone when out of the corner of my eye I saw something big land next to the pond. 

By the time the phone conversation was over and I could get my camera {which took several trips back inside because first I realized the battery wasn't in it and then I noticed I'd left the memory card in the computer}, the something big flew away. 

Whatever it was seemed to land near the creek, and though I was still in my PJ's, I decided to venture in that direction. I suspected a hawk and knew it would likely fly further away if I got too close - they always do - but hoped I could get a shot from a distance before it saw me. 

As soon as I spotted him perched on the branch of one of the tall pines at the edge of the creek, I stopped moving. From where I was standing, he was partially hidden by a clump of long pine needles, but I could see enough to tell that he was a red shouldered hawk. 

I took a few photos and began inching closer...stopping every few seconds to take more photos. I was sure he'd quickly take off. It was impossible for me to hide in the clearing between our backyard and the creek, and even if I wasn't wearing pink PJ's, his keen vision would make him aware of my every move. 

I continued to inch closer - past the dog pen, through the gap in the fence, to the edge of the creek until I was right under the branch where this beautiful creature stood.  

I'll spare you the hundreds of photos I snapped from a distance when I didn't expect to get this close. 

When I get discouraged and choose to camp there - for whatever reasons, however petty and insignificant - pessimism sneaks in and I cease to expect anything good. I should know better. Eyes I've cultivated to find and capture mercies become veiled to the evidences of God's grace. 

And when I least deserve them the most, they fly in on the wings of a red shouldered hawk.


I'm honored to be guest blogging at Dan King's {Bible Dude} today - filling in for Sandra King who is in Haiti. I'd love to have you visit me there...and then click on over to Sandra's and read how God is at work through her in Haiti.