Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Learning to Fly

As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings: Deut, 32:11

There is a beautiful passage in the Bible, Deuteronomy 32:11, 12, which gives a touching picture of the mother eagle teaching her young offspring to fly. She hovers over the warm, comfortable nest where the young birds have been so content and she begins to jerk at it and to tear it to pieces.

She flutters her wings over the nest to try to agitate the eaglets, and she keeps on until she has them all stirred up and completely frustrated. She tears at the nest until it is so messed up, and she nips at them until they are so upset, that they are ready to get out of there. All of a sudden, it doesn't seem nearly as desirable as it previously did! Finally, if they don't get out by themselves, she will kick them out of the nest with her powerful feet.

They are so frightened and disturbed by this time that they are frantic. They don't know how to fly, so they find themselves falling helplessly through space. What does the mother eagle do to them? She swoops underneath them and catches them upon her broad back. Then she tosses them off again, and continues to repeat this procedure until they finally begin to flutter their wings and gradually learn to hold themselves aloft.

You see, the mother eagle knows that she must get her eaglets out of that nest, for if she doesn't they will never learn to fly, and they will eventually perish. Likewise God, by the sufferings and sorrows of this earthly life, is "stirring up our nest," so to speak to "teach us to fly" to our heavenly home. He sometimes has to make that nest pretty uncomfortable in order to make us willing to leave it.

(Zodhiates, Spiros. 1998. The Lord's Prayer. Second Revised edition. Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers., pgs 345-346)

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