A Bird, Thanksgiving, an Opportunity!
Two nights ago, as Kay and I were preparing a Thanksgiving celebration with some of our friends, I was disposing of a bag of trash and came back up on my front porch under a Boston fern. Well there was a little bird roosting in the plant and we were mutually startled. The funny thing is the bird chased me across the porch. When I went in to the house and through the front room, he had flown across the front of the house and for the next half hour was endeavoring to fly in through our bay window.
This anecdote has become juxtaposed in my mind with several incidents on Thanksgiving day. Kay and I had planned a dinner party of 15 with three Burmese families. Frosintina and BiBi Thakbal offered to come and help us get ready for all the company. They were a real blessing to Kay and all three worked really hard. My job was to carve the turkey. As Frosintina was assisting me with this task she noted I was discarding the skin, bones, some pieces of fat and ultimately the carcass. She said to me, the Burmese might make soup with those things.
After all the festivities, Kay prepared four plates of food for additional Burmese friends. As we were delivering the food to one family, we knocked on their door and couldn’t find them. Finally they came out from behind a neighbor’s house and told us the neighbor had got a deer while hunting and was dressing out the meat. So we stopped and went around to watch him work on the venison for a while. I found out from the Burmese later that they were quite shocked that he only saved a few pieces of meat and threw away the rest.
We have one of those pictures inside of a picture on our wall. I can never seem to see the underyling image. I showed it to a couple of the Burmese men and in a few minutes they were chatting about it and pointing out the pattern to their wives. Here are a couple of snaps.
I was thinking about how these refugee families, attending our church, are like that bird outside the window. They are trying to adjust and fit in. They see the Americans through their picture windows but there is still a great gulf. Sure there are things they need, but more important there are things they don’t understand, they are catching on quickly…they need friends.
Recently I read a soon-to-be published book by Brennan Manning, entitled “The Furious Longing of God”. It is all about the passionate love of God for each of us. He longs to let us in, to bridge the gap, and to satisfy us. I am thankful God is able to be everything that we need. Thanks for reading as I share these somewhat disjointed thoughts, they are still crisscrossing in my mind.