Tuesday, June 02, 2009

My Friend, the Oriole

This year, I'm taking a stab at gardening, hoping that I might have inherited my Granddaddy's green thumb along with his name. (I'm Paul Davis Butterworth. He was Davis Head.) It's an experiment, really. I'm hoping to learn some lessons on agriculture from my tomatoes and peppers in hopes that it will lead to a really rockin' pumpkin patch.

I have a friend who has joined me in my gardening. Every time I water the plants, an oriole flies down to the freshly soaked ground and starts pecking for worms. At first, I was worried that the oriole might do some harm to my plants or might take away too many worms.

I was struck recently by the faith that this oriole has. He's not afraid to follow in my footsteps and search for his provision. How much more so should I, not be afraid to call out to my Father God, knowing that he loves me and will provide for me. His provision is not an afterthought, either. It's intentional and providential. My friend, the oriole, is teaching me to pray.

“And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Pray then like this:

“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? ... Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you."
(Matt. 6:7-13, 25-26, 31-33)