8 Mar 2022

Lenten Devotional, Day 6, Prophets (episode 66)

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This morning I watched a male and female cardinal bolt up from feeding on the ground to mid-level in the trees. The robins in the yard glanced up, but kept feeding. The disturbance that produced the reaction was five women walking down the alley, chatting with one another. They weren’t much of a threat, hence, only the species nearest the alley fled and not far.

Bird’s are fantastic indicators of what’s happening around you. They can become like an extension of your senses once you learn to read their behavior. They can alert you to hikers on a trail, shifts in the weather, or predators lurking in the brush. They often have a vantage point and sensitivity that we lack.

I frequently dial into them when inclement weather is coming, so that I know how much time I have before a storm hits, how severe it will be, and how long it will last. Seriously, they will give you all the cues you need to know this.

In general, you have to monitor how far they go, which direction they travel, and how elevated their vocalization are. Each element is an indicator of the level of threat they feel. For example, if everything bolts down into the underbrush and goes completely silent, you can almost always count on an arial predator, such as a hawk, being overhead.

Having birds as an extension of my senses, reminds me of how helpful having a tribe of mature christians is around me. I need people of faith with a vantage point and sensitivity beyond my own.

Prophets were those folks in the Bible. They were uncommonly sensitive to God’s Spirit and his word. They had a vantage point of wisdom that allowed them to see threats that others could not.  As a result, they saw what was coming well before their flock.

We all need prophetic people in our lives that can sound the alarm. Or, at the very least, so we can watch their behavior and and take cues from them. We need them in order to extend our spiritual awareness.

Questions: Who in your life is a mature christian that is uncommonly wise or insightful? How can you learn from their example? What counsel do you need to seek, to benefit from the vantage point?

A Collect for Prophets: Holy God who is all seeing and knowing, place in our lives mature believers with great wisdom, so that our awareness of spiritual threats is expanded beyond our personal limited understanding, in Christ name we pray. Amen.

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