This morning was filled with a steady, persistent rain that kept us confined to the inside of the retreat house. I sought out a room with no a/c, opened the windows, and just listened. Amidst the pitter patter of the rainfall, other sounds came through clearly: birdsong! I’m not blessed with the gift or the knowledge to identify birds by the sounds they emit. Perhaps that “lack” came in handy on this quiet retreat morning. I just listened. “Consider the lilies of the field … they neither spin nor toil.” Consider the birds of the air … the tweets in the trees … the beauty amidst a dark, dreary, rainy Monday morning. I just listened. As a child, I lived in a family that raised birds on our two-acre homestead: Canada geese, mallards, wood ducks, snow geese, Australian ring-necked doves, bantam chickens whose chicks hatched in the palms of our hands, peacocks, the pet parakeet that got loose and met a sad end — you name it, we had it, the rarer the better. Imagine such a menagerie on two acres in the city in today’s world! I enjoyed all our birds but never really cherished the songs they uttered. Since my journey through cancer, birdsong has become important to me. The beauty of such free praise of God reminds me of new life. Today my senses are sharpened to the songs
of birds and insects. It’s like listening to God’s orchestra. On this retreat day I give thanks for the birds of the air, most especially for their songs which delight my ears and my heart. Tomorrow morning take time to just listen. Let the birds bless you with their song!