It’s the time of year when the spring proliferation of bird life and the high winds of West Texas meet to result in many baby birds being ousted out of their nests. When I’m out jogging I see them, sitting there in various stages of development, stunned, and looking for mama. I’ve been told time and time again that I should not touch a baby bird that’s fallen out of its nest, so I don’t. I say a prayer to God whose eye is on the sparrow, and hope for the best for the little guy.
I wonder if this is why we treat people like birds out of the nest: we’ve been trained to not interfere. Our community has many people who live outside, without a home to call their own. They’ve fallen completely out of any nest they might have had at one time. The reasons are many. One young man sleeping on our church’s porch is there because he lost his job and his girlfriend in one week. A middle aged man is there because his work visa is caught up in red tape yet he has no money to go back home to Asia. Another young man is there because he is mentally ill, and can’t cope with a job or normal life. A young woman is there because her boyfriend beat her and she thought she had no where else to go. They are like birds out of the nest, except, their mama is not looking for them, or so it seems. Most of us, myself included, apply the same prescription as we do for baby birds out of the nest: leave them alone.
But some give their lives to scoop people up and put them back in their nests. We are giving a thank you lunch for 30 organizations that care for our homeless neighbors. These leaders ask: Are you safe? Are you hungry or thirsty? Where is your home? It’s not that they can fix all of these things for them. It’s that they know we are all one flock, and no one of us should be stunned on the sidewalk, alone. They are leading the way for us all. God’s eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me, to see what I do when my eye is on the sparrow, too.