“Wewe ndege! Shuka!” a little girl said. “Huyu ndege anasumbuasumbua … Wewe ndege! Shuka! Nitakuchapa!”. The girl of about 2 ½ years was adamant that the bird must come down. “You Bird! Come down!” she was saying. “This bird is troublesome … You bird! Come down! Or I will smack you!”
She had arrived at the garden restaurant and immediately been attracted to the Marabou Stork that was walking about the garden in between the tables. She ran towards it seeking to touch it, but she was surprised to have the bird suddenly flap its wings almost knocking her down in its haste, and fly off to the top of a table umbrella nearby. She was very upset with it then… and began to mumble to herself. I could not hear the words and wondered what the girl was up to … until she began to shout at the bird to come down immediately or she would smack it. A family member eventually came to take her away to a safer place to play … the play pen with the more friendly slides, seesaws and swings.
Clearly she had learned a very important lesson in life … disobedience would result in a smack. It did not seem to matter to her how she would get to the bird to smack it… the lesson was that if one disobeyed, there would be consequences, and one could not escape those consequences.
I liked what her parents had taught at an early age, even though the smacking may be a little strong for some. The point was that there would be negative consequences if one disobeyed an authority. Interesting part was that she had instinctively taken authority over the bird… but that is a story for another day.
Then it got me thinking about our wonderful and forgiving God. Our Father in heaven whom we disobey every day and who does not come down in anger to deny us food, shelter or clothing, or cause major calamities in our lives … but lovingly continues to knock on our life’s and heart’s doors and show us His way that we may receive His grace and blessings now, and even more abundantly in His heavenly kingdom.
Yes, retribution exists, but our loving God instead prefers that we make a choice to love Him and so be empowered to obey Him with the greatest of ease. As a priest last Sunday said: “If you love someone, you do what they say, don’t you? And it is so easy to do when you truly love them.”
Even better, God does not command us to love and obey Him just for His own sake, but that we may live a life of true love filled with His blessings, and better yet, be prepared to receive the greatest blessing of being with Him in His heavenly kingdom.
Do we stop to think how much better life could be if we just obeyed His commandments diligently? Does anyone have a testimony of obedience to God that led to a more fulfilled life than one could ever have imagined? If you do, please share it, for I am sure that such big or little experiences will open up for us all a beautiful new beginning filled with God’s love, mercy and grace.
Do share with us your experience…
Come … walk with me in the Garden.
*The language spoken by the little girl is Swahili.
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