I’ve been watching a pair of Ospreys, “sea eagles”, as they fly around the river in my backyard. One day last week they soared so high that I could barely see them with my worn out old eyes. I did notice that they weren’t even flapping their wings, but instead gracefully soaring and catching updrafts as they circled and circled being lifted higher and higher. This was not being done to hunt, though they do circle when they look for unsuspecting fish that make the mistake of swimming too close to the surface of the river, but they do not have near the altitude when hunting. I believe they were soaring and circling for the sheer joy of it.
Soon enough this pair descended and began hunting. I could easily tell when they spotted a fish as they would start rapidly flapping their wings to suspend themselves directly over the fish until they were directly overhead. Then they would suddenly fold their wings and dive straight towards the fish at blazing speeds. I saw one of them miss several fish before finally sinking its talons into a nice mullet and then take off to the comfort of its nest located just across the river with the mullet aerodynamically placed facing straight ahead in its talons.
I am very impressed by these birds. They show up for work every day and are tenacious in their resolve to keep working until they succeed. Once their bellies are full they take to soaring around in the beautiful blue skies or sitting on their nests preening. Ospreys mate for life and are almost always seen in the vicinity of their mate. They build huge sturdy nests high in the trees and it is there that they raise their young. They feed them throughout the day and then teach them to fly and then how to fish on their own.
I was thinking that many people should follow their example. They have a strong work ethic, they are fiercely loyal to their family, and they take time to enjoy life. As I looked through the news reports today I was disgusted, as usual it was loaded with violence, hatred, bitterness, chaos, threats, and heart-breaking stories. The Ospreys don’t have any of those problems; no television, cell phones, Internet, newspapers, or malcontents marching down the river with a bullhorn screaming obscenities.
Sometimes Ospreys can be heard shrieking as they fly through the air, but I believe that they are mainly just rejoicing their very existence. We too should be rejoicing. The psalmist wrote: Psalm 96:11 – Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it. Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them; let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.
We have so much for which to be thankful.
Give thanks to God today and take some time to go far beyond the hustle and bustle of the concrete jungle and the problems within its often mean streets… Look around at all that the LORD has created and rejoice, be glad, resound, be jubilant and sing for joy. The Lord is with you today and every day . . .
The oldest book in the Bible is Job. He observed the same things I’ve described but portrayed it in terms far more eloquent than I could ever write.
But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.