Sing because it is morning

I like being up in the early morning, before everyone starts, and while the world has that particular dawn calm.

Of course the very moment I wrote those last words a stellers jay erupts in raucous squawking. I turn to see it attacking and chasing a poor hapless squirrel around a cedar tree. I assume the squirrel to be hapless, though I suspect jays are not apt to squirrel hunt without reason, and I know squirrels to be particularly over curious on occasion.

With all the noise and violence I wander over to the fray, to see if I can referee their squabble or at least protect the squirrel from a sharp beak by encouraging each to their separate corners.

They do it themselves. The squirrel takes to an old craggy oak. The jay returns to his fir, where I suspect a nest can be found. Each continues to add a few choice words to each other, words I am likely glad are not translated.

“No one swears like a jay,” Mark Twain once wrote. He’s right. Jays have a choice vocabulary when they feel up to it. Squirrels, however, have their own way with language. He must not have heard our grey squirrels if he thought jays are unmatched in cursing.

The world has again that particular calm. A finch sings happily in the upper boughs of a cedar, joining in the chorus of other species. They all sing with great abandon. Sing for what?

Because it is morning.

A chipmunk sits on a nearby stump swishing its tail for much the same reason as it looks down the hill.

I like being up in the early morning but I didn’t say I like getting up in the early morning.

From the rest and comfort of my sleep I ponder immediately the mysteries of my life.

I think of my plans and my goals for the day.

I think of my frustrations, such as my truck which has been in the shop for the last week. From here I ponder my other needs, and wants, and desires. Still in bed I begin to worry, even fret.

I get restless as my mind wanders into all the crevices of my life. I try to pray but am distracted, distracted by my own self.

I get up, get to writing, for that is the salve of my soul. It works. A little bit. There is renewal but not deep lasting resurrection.

So I wander outside where the chickadees and the finches, and the robins sing.

After the momentary fracas my calm returns. The cool morning breeze massages the forest trees.

A raven calls for its mate in the distance.

The sparrows sing.

God watches over the ravens and knows when a sparrow falls. That’s what Scriptures say.

The birds sing when it is morning. They sing because it is morning.

This is a song I need to learn and sing its peace through the whole day.

That, I think, is sure faith.

I don’t feel that. I don’t always even know how to find it. But oh how I want it.

The peace of this early morning soothes my soul and eases my mind. May I sing, not for all the answers which may or may not come, but because it is morning. It is God’s morning.

I think I need to keep listening to the birds. They know secrets I would be wise to discover.

I think the chipmunk does as well, though I might be reading too much into the chipmunk.

The sun now crests the hills to the east. I feel my prayers returning and rising faith.

The peace has entered my soul once more.

Thanks be to God, and his birds.

From June 12, 2006.

A few years ago, Barclay Press invited me to do a two week daily journal for their website. They’ve since changed their online presence so those writings are gone. I was sorting out different files on my computer this evening and happened to run across them. So, I thought, I might as well repost them here. Both to have a record of them, and maybe more so, because these were written in 2006 and 2007. A fair bit of changes have happened in my life since then, so these are records of a time in my life when all I had was faith. I was writing a lot during these journaling times, and it’s curious what came out when I sat down to write. So, mostly for me, but also for anyone whose interested, I’m going to post one of these a day for the next 20 days or so.

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