Saturday, December 3, 2011

Never Tapped Out!

Luke 21:19
By your endurance you will gain your souls.

It's early spring at our house.

I'm busy changing the sheets on our bed when I hear it.

Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap.

Just beneath the bedroom window.

Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap.

Too soft for a woodpecker's sturdy bill knocking against the cedar siding. What kind of bird, I wonder, is methodically, industriously, drilling away on our home?

As our window is recessed below, I have no view from here. I have to risk scaring the bird away with a visit to our deck. I open the door and move as slowly and cautiously as possible. I focus on the siding jutting out beneath the window.

No bird in sight.

Wait! Are there some dents in that knothole, the soft-spot in the cedar? Why, yes, indeed, there are!

Before I can take my next breath, the mystery is solved. A diminutive nuthatch swoops effortlessly from the nearby limb of a tree, clutches the side of the house, and begins to peck decisively, determinedly, at that very spot!

I watch, transfixed by his monumental endeavors. Surely, I think, he can't keep this up for long.

True to my thought, after several moments of intense tapping, he retreats. Only to be replaced by his mate who attacks the spot with fresh vim and vigor.

No doubt about it. These two have decided to nest here! If they succeed in opening the hole, they will have the perfect, sheltered spot to lay their eggs and hatch their babies.

Being the nature-enthusiast that I am, my elation knows no bounds. I am humbled and honored that these humorous, entertaining little birds have chosen our house above any nook or cranny they could find in the woods to raise their family.

Danny, my husband, is dubious at best.

"Even if they can peck through that knot, I'm not sure I like the idea of them nesting in our house."

"But, it's not actually in our house, " I protest. "They are in the hollow space beneath our window. What harm can that possibly do?"

He shrugs, "I suppose there's no stopping them at this point. Guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens."

For days, we observe the progress as these two with minds as one continue on their mission. The hole grows larger and larger until it is, at last, long and wide enough to allow them to pass easily through it.

Let the nest building begin!
This pair of nuthatches offers the perfect example of what it means to persevere, to endure, to never give up. They see an opportunity, even though the way they go is not easy. They view the obstacle, but they focus on the goal.

The word "quit" does not exist for them.

They are doing everything in their power to answer God's call to provide a safe haven for their fledglings and the propagation of their species.

They are saying, "yes" when the world around them says, "no".

By their endurance, all, for God and His world, is gained.

How can you view obstacles as opportunities, endure for the sake of your soul?

Will you pray with me?
When we stop, Father, and take time to examine and appreciate the creatures who cohabit this world with us, we can learn so much. Help us to become more observant. Guide us through this obstacle course called life. May we endure for Your sake and the saving of our souls. Amen.

Psalms 20, 21:1-7 (8-14) or 110:1-5 (6-7), 116, 117
Isaiah 4:2-6
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
Luke 21:5-19


  1. They nested in the wall for 3 years before we really needed to seal the access portal for good. And yes, they had babies in the nice insulated cavity.

  2. We need to learn a lot from these birds..On the mountains of truth you can never climb in vain: either you will reach a point higher up today, or you will be training your powers so that you will be able to climb higher tomorrow.

  3. I was going to ask about the birds...@Danny -- thank you for answering. Wow three years!

    I think what speaks most to me is being observant, sometimes I get so wrapped up in 'life' I miss the beauty around me. Thank you for reminding me of this.

  4. Endurance is not always an easy trait to acquire, but a necessary one. God provides us all with an amazing capacity to endure and leaning on Him and His promises can definitely help!

  5. This is simply beautiful. Thank you for the reminder to endure. I'm sorry I haven't stopped by lately, I have been on a blogging break.:) I sure have missed your encouragement.

  6. Nice post...I am learning what endurance is all about, the physical one, which I need to compete in marathon. Emotional and mental endurance, I think we all have a great deal of them managing the home, kids and other things, of course we blow up and let off steam from time to time.

  7. Happy Saturday, everyone, and thanks for coming by today. :)
    @Danny - Thanks for the details I left out! :)
    @Alpana - I love your image of a "mountain of truth"; we are never climbing in vain! Wonderful point!
    @Amy - It happens to all of us. That's why just sitting still and "being" is so important; it opens us up to so much more around us.
    @Jessica - I don't know that I could truly endure unless I leaned on Him first and foremost. He does provide for our needs!
    @Colleen - Great to see you back! Thank you so much for your kind words. :)
    @Janu - Wow! Training for a marathon? I'm so impressed! That does take a whole lot of endurance to be sure. Physical exercise is a great way to let off steam, too. :)

    Blessings to you all!!!


  9. Totally off the mark I think,lol but I was impressed with the fact that you let them continue to make a hole in your house and nest there for 3 years,lol. I love that! Most people would have done everything in their power to scare them away and keep them out. We all need to learn that we are to share this world with the creatures put here by God. Thanks for being the type of folks you are. Love you, Gina

  10. Hi, Bonnie and Gina! Thanks for stopping by today.
    @Bonnie - Yes, there can be those overwhelming obstacles, the hurdles we never think we can get over. I think, in those cases, we endure all the more.
    @Gina - We loved sharing our house with the nuthatches! Then, of course, Danny's brother said it really wasn't a very safe idea; that's when we filled the hole with a cement-type material. And, yes, we do need to learn to share!

    Blessings to you both!

  11. Great post, I love watching the animals so close to home. We did have to get aggressive with the squirrels the were tearing the insulation out from under our home. We finally figured out where they were getting in and blocked it. I love sharing my life with the animals, it keeps me real. <3

  12. Blessings there Martha! Great discernment and Truth in all you have said above, sister!

    Glory To His Name, amen..and His Alone.

    Soli Deo Gloria


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