Advent Devotional: Friday, December 27

Brenda Farmer

Friday, The Second Day of Christmas: Love
December 27, 2013

Last week as I was looking out to the back yard I saw a flurrying of birds.  Many, many birds flying from tree to tree in great haste.  There were robins, finches, bluejays, cardinals and more.
  
Even our pileated woodpecker was hammering like a machine gun on a tree in the back.  
  
I thought of our birdfeeders during the winter and a story that I once read by John Leax.    It is called " At the Winter Feeder".
  
His feather flame doused dull by ice and cold, the cardinal hunched into the rough, green feeder but ate no seed.  Through binoculars I saw festered and useless his  beak, broken at the root.  Then two:  one blazing, one gray rode the swirling weather into my vision and  lighted at his side... Unhurried, as if possessing the patience of God, they cracked sunflowers and fed him beak to wounded beak choice meats.
  
Each morning and afternoon the winter long, that odd triumvirate, that trinity of need, returned and ate their sacrament of broken seed.


This story reminds me of how my church family at LABC and the community rode into the swirling weather to love and  feed me and my family this past year.  No, I didn't have a broken beak, but did have a repaired broken heart.  You all sustained us with your love by bringing food, calls, cards, visits and all your prayers.  You encouraged us by being here when we were broken and could not sustain ourselves.  YOU LOVED US.  
  
As Jesus said to Peter in John, chapter 21, versus 15 - 17:

"Simon, son of John, do you love me?  He answered, Yes , Lord, you know that I love you.  Jesus said, "Take care of my lambs."
  
Jesus asked Peter this same question three times.  Peter answering  yes each time and Jesus replying to him each time.... "Take care of my sheep".

My Lord, I want to thank you for your loving care of me and my family.  I am humbled for the love you have for your sheep.  As your sheep, we stray, stumble and fall.  Yet, you love us still.  Please help me to take care of your sheep as your Son, Jesus Christ, has commanded me to do.  Thank you for the love and care that those who "love" you have so graciously done unto me.   I ask your blessings for your sheep  who are broken, lonely, hungry and uncared for in this world.  I pray that they will be fed and cared for.  Help me to be bold and intentional in answering  your command.  I pray this in the Loving Shepherd's name, Jesus Christ,  Amen.