At the end of what you ask? At the end of all hope. Most recently I had an encounter with a small bird that reminded me of what it’s like to be at this place. A place where lack of nourishment, unsafe conditions, anxiety, and injury all contribute to a rapid demise. As much as I’d prefer to not remember what that feels like, it’s memories like those that keep me thankful that I was caught at the end!
Maintenance, oil, filter and tires flashed across my dashboard indicating it was time to get my car serviced again. I called the dealer, scheduled an appointment and strolled in Friday mid-morning to get this taken care of. What I thought was going to be my usual, non-eventful, “change the oil” experience turned out to be a little different than I expected. I usually sit in the air conditioned waiting room where they serve courtesy popcorn, coffee, water, and even doughnuts all in an effort of making the waiting period more bearable. This time was different though. My husband, Frankie, was with me and he of course wanted to check out the latest model car so we made our way across the parking lot under the scorching sun. After about 15 minutes the sweat was literally dripping down my back when suddenly I caught a glimpse of it, my saving grace, a small wooden gazebo where I could take refuge from the blazing sun and rest until we were ready to go back to the comfort of the 72 degree waiting room.
As I stepped up onto the wooden frame floor of the gazebo, I immediately stumbled upon a baby bird camouflaged onto the floor. I had to question what I was seeing, as this was certainly not the place for a bird. He was tiny, and as I bent over in bewilderment over why he was there, he chirped and tried walking towards me with obvious difficulty. He was definitely injured. I imagined his nest was somewhere in the tree that hung over the gazebo. It was apparent that someone had found the bird before I had, as the cap of a water bottle had been filled with water and placed near for him to drink. Unfortunately, this baby bird was way too small to drink on his own or fend for himself in any way.
Although I had no idea how to begin caring for this little one, I asked the salesman for an empty box and decided I would take him home and search the internet for information on what to do next. I scooped the little fellow up, put him into the box and rested knowing that I had at least managed to remove him from this unsafe place. After all, it was only a matter of time before a squirrel or other predator would have eaten him.
Not 10 minutes had passed when the bird became very anxious. He was attempting to walk but in spite of all his efforts and due to his injury, he remained in the same place. His intention was only evident because of the scratching sound on the cardboard box. Within a matter of minutes the baby bird plopped over and died. It was then I realized, I had caught him at the end!
There have been times in my life where if it hadn’t been for divine intervention, I too would have plopped over and given in to my circumstances. Just like the bird, I’ve had injuries that have held me back and in spite of all the human effort I’ve put forth into freeing myself all I have produced has been an empty sound. I have allowed anxiety, fear, stress, and other emotions to create an unsafe place for me and have fed these emotions by depriving myself of true spiritual nourishment necessary for growth, health, and good condition.
It was unfortunate for this little bird that as I caught him at the end, I was limited as to what I could do to turn things around for him. Today, I not only understand what it’s like to be at the end, but I also understand what it’s like to be caught by the Hand of God at the end. Only that can make a difference!
Has the Hand of God caught you at the end?