A bird died on our porch today. It was a chickadee, and it lay on its back with its legs pointed straight upwards, stiff and uncurled. I don’t know what could have killed it unless it was the cold, though it has only recently turned chill. It’s a reminder that small things have fragile lives, short and unnoticed, usually. By dying on the porch, this bird was noticed, but still only one bird among the hundreds, probably, that frequent our property. We are nearly as anonymous ourselves as humans, though we like to think of ourselves as valuable and significant. We are, of course, valuable to that small circle of people who love us, as I’ve been reminded this week through my father-in-law’s death. Our presence alone, to these people, is valued.
Still, even “famous” people, people whose names everyone knows, though their deaths initially hit the news, are still only a mention, an interesting filler, a curiosity to think, Oh, yes, I remember him: he played in Ben Hur or she was on that comedy chow, and then we go on.
Given this, it’s even more incomprehensible that God values us at all. In the vastness of the universe, we are small, white breasted birds who fall with no notice–except for his. He even used that example to claim our value far above a sparrow’s.
Knowing this, the day is not so cold, the skies not so bleak. We birds have a shelter from the cold.