Tenderness – A Nature Essay – Joy DeKok
“How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these.” George Washington Carver
I wandered out to where the birds gather. On the way, I prayed for a few tender moments. The ones that seem like they come straight from the heart of God the Creator and seep softly into mine.
For a while, I sat alone in the sunshine with my camera ready and my finger hovering about the button.
Their arrival startled me as they came in fast and a bit furious. Some arrived in a flurry of feathers and even the gentle juncos were feisty and flighty. I wondered if I had somehow carried the chaos of the human world into theirs. I hoped not. I shivered as the chilly wind circled around me and snuck into the space between my orange cap and my red jacket.
A few minutes later two things happened: the wind quieted and so did the birds.
Sometimes one of them listened as I welcomed them to the stump.
Others looked at me between bites.
This one paused while “scratching” his or her way to the best bites. I love these glances in my direction.
When my time with the birds was complete for today, gratitude flourished in my heart and I wanted to pass it on. This is my attempt to wrap the beautiful gifts of God’s tenderness to me today as a testimony of words and photos and give them to you.
He is good. Always good. He’s so very good to me.
Until Next Time,
When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. Henri Nouwen