One morning last week my husband told me there was a hawk in the backyard. I glanced out the kitchen window and observed nothing. Later, he came in again and asked, “Did you see the hawk?”
“No,” I replied, assuming it flew away.
“It’s still there. It’s been there all morning.”
I looked out again, scanning the trees. No hawk. Maybe he was blending in with the trees. Erik led me upstairs to our 2nd floor deck and told me to look with binoculars. “Ah,” I thought, “it’s probably way back in the trees and that’s why I couldn’t see it.”
Nope. That hawk was right in the middle of our backyard, pecking away at bugs in the grass. Turns out I couldn’t see it because I wasn’t looking in the right place. I wasn’t looking hard enough.
There’s so much we miss if we aren’t looking for it.
That hawk, on the other hand, wasn’t missing a thing. Between pecks, he hopped up on the soccer goal and stayed alert, scanning the ground. Every minute or so he jumped down with lightning speed and pulled up a frog or a worm. He was focused, and it served him well.
I want to be like that hawk. I don’t want to miss what God is doing because I’m not looking for it. I don’t want to hold so tightly to what I believe his goodness should look like that I miss his actual blessings. I don’t want to be someone who loses hope, or doesn’t expect God to work, simply because he isn’t conforming to my plans.
Last spring, I spoke with a good friend about how easy it is for me to do this though. I have been in a long season of loneliness, brought on by a number of factors mostly beyond my control. While I have cried out to God to ease this pain, it seems he has been
silent on the issue.
But when I stop and look harder, I see ways that God is providing relationships for me. My life may not look like an episode of Friends (and let’s face it-whose does??), but I have people. Yes, it’s hard to grab the quality time I would love to have with them, but I am thankful for the moments God does give me. It might be a last minute serendipitous lunch with a friend, an unexpected phone call, a canceled appointment that gives me sudden time with someone else. It’s not so much that I am alone-I am simply so focused on what I think a lack of loneliness looks like that I miss what he is giving me.
That hawk, it appears, has made our backyard his home. He’s learned there’s life here for him, and where to look for it. He trusts that this place will provide for him.
You and I, we know where to look.
Life is here, being given to us day after day. He is with us, giving us what we need. Sometimes it’s in ways we wouldn’t expect, so we miss it. Let’s pry our hands from the preconceived notions we have of how life should be so we can grab hold of what he is offering. He’s at work. We just have to search in the right places.“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart.” Jer. 29:13