We took The last full-day trip of our staycation yesterday. Friend’s of ours have vacation home in Chesapeake City, Maryland and have been inviting us to come down for the last couple of years. We finally took the opportunity to visit.
Their house is located in a small wooded association of homes. As part of their association our friends have access to a private beach along the Elk River. It’s a beautiful spot to spend an afternoon. We swam, chatted, laughed, and had a nice cookout looking out over the water.
It’s also a wonderful place to take pictures.
On several occasions some birds of prey flew overhead, and on fly-by I was fortunate enough to have my camera in hand. It wasn’t until I got home yesterday evening, however, I noticed this particular bird was actually carrying a fish it had plucked from the river!
On a day when the world is mourning another horrific terrorist attack, these images prod something deep in my soul. As great and powerful and all-consuming we believe our causes and beliefs are – the natural world doesn’t care.
As humans we seem to need causes and beliefs as a way to create some order in the world, and that’s not a bad thing. I myself am a Christian, and a pastor at that. I believe Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. I long for his Kingdom and the arrival of his Shalom. But witnessing that bird overhead reminded me how small I am, and what a blip I am on the horizon of human history. This humbles me. Even though I believe Jesus is Lord, I don’t need to make sure everyone else knows they are wrong so I can be right. I don’t need to punish those who disagree with me, or follow other paths. Nor do I need to disrespect all paths by saying, “All roads lead to the same place.” I can listen, and I can speak, with respect. I can also pray, “Your Kingdom come, your will be done” as an expression of longing for all humanity and not simply those of my own tribe.
Maybe if we all learned from the image of an Eagle, flying high above our selfish pursuits, humility and peace could be the order of the day.