The little bird had grown up free. She ate the best food, learned to fly with good bird parents, sat by the waves’ edge and rested. She skimmed lightly over the water and dove down and caught fresh fish. She was happy.
One day, she flew farther along the shore and saw a line in the sand. On the other side of that line, the beach was very different. It caught her eye. At first glance, it looked like fun to the little bird. A party of birds gathered, loud noises, littered bags of used fries for the taking. She was nervous, though, and turned back to her home. As she flew, she felt her lungs breath freely in the clean air and the wide-open spaces.
But the lure of the exciting and different called her back the next day. She didn’t tell anyone; she just went. She gathered up her courage and landed among the loud birds. She tried to fit in and act like she was one of them. She boldly grabbed a fry, liked it, and then grabbed another. She stayed all day, bumping into other birds, even fighting over a choice morsel of trash.
By the end of the day, though, she felt strange and weighed down. She knew she had to go home, immediately, while she still could. She couldn’t describe it….it was just a feeling of impending danger.
She flew somewhat sluggishly, and finally made it back over the line in the sand. She slept badly all night and awoke feeling even worse. The little bird promised herself not to do that again.
It took time, but after some days, she felt better, more herself, freer. She flew as she did before and felt joy in chasing the waves. She was home, and it was good.
This story came about due to a book I was reading the past two days. It was very well reviewed, excellently written. I was instantly catapulted into this imaginary world created by the author, and I loved it. Couldn’t put the book down. But suddenly last evening, it changed. New plot elements were introduced that I knew would displease God. It felt dirty, wrong, and all I knew was that I had to stop reading immediately. No matter how good the book was, no matter how much I wanted to know how it ended. It just made me feel bad inside, and extremely sad. The loss of purity in our culture hit me like a brick wall. The book has gone back to the library, and I feel better. Like the bird, that was my line in the sand.
Stay strong, friends. Pray that Christ holds us very tightly through these perilous days.
“…let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” – 2 Corinthians 7:1b
“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.” – Romans 12:2