Friday, April 10, 2015

What a Bird Taught me About Overcoming Discouragement

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.  –I Corinthians 15:58

I was doing a little work around the house the other evening, and my wife came home and found me checking fluid levels in my old 1982 Chevy C-10 pickup.  A man’s love for his truck will have to be the subject of another blog post, but I confess I do love that old truck.  In fact, I treasure it more than any vehicle I have ever owned.  This explains why I was so alarmed when my wife noticed the bird’s nest in the truck grill.  I stooped down and looked and sure enough, an industrious bird had built a fine nest right there in my truck’s grill.

This must have taken place while I was away last week visiting my parents in Ohio.  The truck sat in the driveway for 5 days, and a bird must have thought it a perfect place to raise a family.  Thus, the bird’s nest.  The nest was built right in front of the radiator behind the grill, and I had to crawl underneath the front of the truck and reach up and pull out the nest.  I pulled out handful after handful of twigs, pine needles, grass, pieces of straw, and a perfectly formed nest.  Fortunately, no tiny eggs were found, which would really have made me feel like a heel.  I felt bad enough just tearing out the nest, and wow, but did that bird construct a nest.  After a few minutes, I had removed all the material and it was quite an amount. 

As I removed the nest, I considered how hard the bird, and maybe her mate, must have worked to build the nest.  I cannot imagine the number of trips they made as they foraged in the yards and trees around my truck to gather their materials.  How many hours did they spend?  And here I was in a matter of minutes tearing it all down. 

Have you ever had the experience of giving your all to something only to believe it was a failure?  Perhaps you gave your all to a project, an endeavor, or even a relationship, and in the end it all fell apart.  You may have felt as though all your labors were in vain.  God knows the discouragement of feeling our work was for nothing.  We have all experienced the hurt and frustration of wondering if what we so poured ourselves into was in vain.  God’s Word reminds us that our labors in the Lord are never in vain.

God looks upon us in mercy and compassion.  The Lord is always forgiving.  And he offers strength in the midst of our discouragements and disappointments.  Beware the feeling that all we have done was for nothing.  You are having far greater influence than you realize.  The Lord gives grace for healing the hurts we feel and strength to carry on.

I have no doubt that little bird will find another place for her nest, and even now is probably busily working on her new project.  That’s a nice thought; just because the first try didn’t work, she relentlessly and boldly trudges ahead, even in rain, wind, and whatever else comes her way.  If birds can move forward with such determination, surely we can as well. 

So, how about you?  Have you faced disappointments lately?  Are you discouraged?  If so, I welcome an opportunity to pray for you today.  Leave me a comment below.  Remember, you can post anonymously. 

God bless you.  It’s going to be a great day. 


  1. Dan, that was well said and beneficial. I needed to read that today.

    1. Thank so much. I'm glad this was an encouragement to you.
      God bless you and I hope your day is getting brighter.

  2. This is so wonderful that you actually take the time to respond to these comments.

    1. Thank you for the kind words. I'm glad to encourage my readers in any way I can. Life is hard - often discouraging. But in God there is always hope of a brighter day. Keep walking forward. Keep looking up. Never give up.

      I hope you have a blessed day.