Sunday, September 15, 2013

A Bird in the Hand

The dogs found a little bird in the yard the other day. It didn’t seem able to fly. I don’t know whether it was a just-out-of-the-nest baby, or whether it had some defect. It didn’t really look like a newbie.

Anyway, I called the dogs off, and tried to help the little thing get out of harm’s way. We have a yard and a pasture, separated by a fence. I wanted the bird to go away from both, but instead, it sought to creep through the fence from the yard into the pasture.

That was bad enough, but then it got stuck. The fence actually has chicken wire attached, and the even this little bird was a little to large to get through the holes in the mesh.

I put on my garden gloves and tried to move it one way or the other, but it wouldn’t budge. Then I got my wire cutters and made the hole a little larger; the bird forged on through. Since it couldn’t fly, it was fairly easy to capture in my gloved hands, and I set it in a safe area where at least the dogs wouldn’t find it. I can’t vouch for its safety from cats and birds of prey, though.

There’s a lesson in this. Perhaps you can figure it out. If you do, let me know, because I’m not sure what it is!

But just imagine: someday perhaps there will be stories about Amma Photini (me).

A sister came to Amma Photini and said, “My sister is in a quandary, and can’t decide which side of the fence to be on. What should I tell her?”

Abba Photini answered, “Is it right that the dogs should bother a little bird that cannot fly? Better to have a bird in the hand by the aid of wire-cutters than to have two dogs in the bushes.”

I think maybe that’s exactly how some of those “Sayings of the Desert Fathers” came to be! (You know – the obscure ones that leave you shaking your head…).

Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me.

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