I have a big garden, hedgerows at the front and trees at the back. In the spring it becomes a hive of activity. Blackbirds, starlings and sparrows are busy overturning autumns leaves looking for insects. They are getting strengthened for the busy time ahead, building nests and rearing young.
One year there were so many blackbirds nesting in the hedgerows, that I wanted to call our house, “Blackbird Cottage.” It is a joy to hear them sing from early morning in May, when they are flitting to and fro feeding their young. Sometimes their tones are raised when there is danger about in the form of our cat.
Today I missed the birdsong and all the activity of the birds in our garden. I wondered, “Where do the birds go for the summer?” I checked this question out on the Internet and the RSPB website gave the following information. I quote.
“Firstly, for many birds we are coming to the end of a hectic breeding season. After all of the battling for territory, courting mates, finding nesting material, gathering food for young and chasing off predators, it is no surprise that some of the birds are looking a little worse for wear. Late summer is the time to moult all of the worn and damaged feathers to be replaced with a shiny new set that will keep the birds well insulated through the cold winter months.
During the moult, which takes a number of weeks, birds change their ways, becoming quiet and reclusive. They don’t want to expose themselves to predators whilst they do not have a full set of flight feathers which would make them much more vulnerable. They will still be around but skulking under hedges. Also many birds depart to the wider countryside to feast on the seasonal peak of seeds and fruits.”
I mused. That is exactly how I feel at the end of the summer. I have been busy with rearing my children, when they are off school or university and there is more work for me to do. We all stay up later because of the longer evenings, more outings for walks and definitely more cooking and shopping. My feathers are definitely easily ruffled. I have bags under my eyes, my nails are brittle, my hair is grey and my skin dry, my legs and arms are weak. If only I could fly away to some resting place like the birds where there is an abundance of fruit and food.
Psalm 55 v 6 says “Oh that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest. I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.” Even the birds hide and rest. God sees our distress, whether it is tiredness, mental anguish, worry about money or concern for a family or whatever trouble comes our way.
Jesus said to take the birds of the air as our example. Matthew 6 v 26 says,
“ Look at the birds! They don’t worry about what to eat—they don’t need to sow or reap or store up food—for your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than they are. 27 Will all your worries add a single moment to your life?”
Another comment on the RSPB was from a visitor. He said “Robins spend summer on the French Riviera: a popular spot is Juan-les-Pins. Starlings flock to Brighton for the world famous murmuration festival, while blackbirds fly off to their second nests, usually in Cornwall.”
I laughed. Birds of a feather flock together. Starlings often gather together in flight and do acrobatics in the sky. They dance and twirl to have fun. It is good to meet up with friends of like minds and hang out for a while. We are going to a gathering of friends at the end of September.
Some people are rich enough to have second homes in the sun. We don’t have a second home but we are off to Greece soon. Psalm 104 v 15 says, “God gives man wine to make him glad, and olive oil as lotion for his skin, and bread to give him strength.” I will get my heart strengthened, body rested and sunshine to warm my bones. We are learning from the birds.
Bible quotes from the Living Bible