For this God is our God forever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.
Some years ago I was honored to conduct a graveside service for a friend that concluded with a most touching ceremony. After the benediction and the singing of Amazing Grace a man came forward with two beautifully decorated baskets. Eagerly we peered into the baskets to see white doves resting noiselessly inside. Then, one by one, members of the family took a dove from the man and released it to the sky. It was a beautiful sight.
But by the time everyone had walked away from the grave, I noticed that the doves were circling close overhead, except for two that had landed in a tree. Wondering if perhaps something had gone wrong, I asked the man what was happening.
He explained that the white doves were actually white pigeons, or homing pigeons, to be exact. He said that he could take his pigeons anywhere across the wide Valley of the Sun and they would always find their way back home. Often he would return home and find the birds had beat him back.
But first, he said, the pigeons had “to get their bearings.” They had never before been there. And before they headed off , they wanted to first tune into their Global Positioning Systems (GPS). They wanted to find out where they were and which way to go.
Jesus told us to “consider the birds of the air,” which I did that day. Those birds got me thinking about how I had been worrying about direction. I had been fretting about which way to go.
And as the birds circled overhead they spoke to me, and they told me that this was a time for getting my bearings. This was a special time of waiting on God and tuning into his Spirit. No, I wasn’t just going around in circles! I was checking my own GPS readings. God would show me the way!
Did you know that the most often uttered prayer in the Bible is for the Lord to guide? Yes, God knows our deep yearning for guidance and to know which way to go. God has filled his Word with promises to guide us forever, even all the way Home.
Take time to get your bearings. Don’t rush on down the road. Tune into the Spirit. Then soar!
Grace and Peace,
P. S. We invite you to check out the brochure on our Fall Tour: Renewing the Call to Christian Citizenship: In the Steps of the Founders. Space is limited. We’d love to have you join us!
WEEKLY CLASSES WITH TIM SMITH:
EVERY WEDNESDAY THROUGH THE SUMMER
AT THE FRANCISCAN RENEWAL CENTER
(GARCES ROOM OF PIPER HALL)
Wednesday Noon – 1:00 P.M.
Songs for Life’s Journey: The Psalms of Ascent
Wednesday Evening 7:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M.
Profiles of Spiritual Maturity: The Letter of James