Our house here in South Africa is surrounded by trees—big trees, tall trees, trees with lots of shade. Since we have lots of trees, we also have an abundance of birds around our house. And since we don’t have screens on any of the windows or doors, these birds sometimes find their way into our house.
Of course, once they get inside, they are frantic to get back outside, but due to the way our house is constructed, they have a hard time finding their way back out. So armed with brooms or mops or towels, we try to help them find their way back outside where it is safer for them and for us!
There is one bird that has been particularly annoying. We have chased him from the house 3 times already. But he doesn’t seem to have learned his lesson. Just this morning, I had opened the front door early while it was still fairly cool to allow the living room to cool off some before the heat arrived.
As I was sitting on the couch reading my Bible, I heard a noise close to the front door and went to investigate. There was that same pesky bird, trying to come in the front door. I quickly closed the door, waited a few minutes for him to fly away, and then opened the door again. About 15 minutes later, I heard the noise at the front door again. I quickly went over to see, and sure enough, there was that same pesky bird, getting ready to come in the door again!
I am not sure why that bird wants to come in my house. There is nothing in the house for him. Once he gets inside, he just flies around looking for a way out, and leaving evidence of his presence behind. One of these days, he is going to get seriously hurt. He would be much happier (and I would too!) if he just stayed outside where he belongs.
As I sat there thinking about that crazy bird, the Lord reminded me that sometimes I act just like that bird. Maybe there is something I want to do, or someplace I want to go, and God tells me it is not good for me. But in my superior wisdom, I think I know more than God—so I persist on my way.
God lets me keep on, and as I continue on my way, I soon find that things are not turning out the way I thought they would. I find myself flying around looking for a way out or looking for a way to remedy my situation—but I only make things worse. It is only when I go back to God and ask His forgiveness for my willfulness that He shows me the way out. But He doesn’t always take away the consequences of my foolish actions.
Oh how much wiser I would be if I listened to God’s direction! I would save myself a lot of grief and heartache if I obeyed Him and walked in His way, not my own. He is much wiser than I am, and He knows what is best for my life.
“Lord, help me to trust you. Help me to listen to Your direction and not persist in going my own way. And when I do end up in the wrong place or make a wrong choice, help me to recognize it right away and admit my wrong so You can help me to get back where I need to be!”
Shew my thy ways, O LORD; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day. (Psalm 25:4-5)
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes; fear the LORD, and depart from evil. (Proverbs 3:5-7)
Beverly is a wife, mother, and grandmother. She and Doug Hammett have been married for over 35 years. Since her father was a pastor and her husband was already a pastor when she married him, she is well acquainted with the blessings as well as the problems of the ministry! Bev’s favorite things to do are read and spend time with her family.
In Autumn of 2010, Doug stepped aside from his position as senior pastor at LVBC to reach and train men in Botswana and South Africa. Beverly continues to write for our ladies publication, giving her unique perspective of life in the ministry, and now life on the mission field. You can read more about their ministry here.