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  • Sarah Raad

Birds

Christ – God the Son – sacrificed a lot to become a little bird like us…

Annunciation (Peter Paul Rubens)

I have a beautiful blue Indian Ringneck Parrot who we call Bluey and who has lived with us for about a year now, since my veterinarian brother-in-law received her as a donation at his clinic. Bluey often comes out of her cage and sits on my shoulder as I walk around the house – in fact she is sitting on my shoulder as I write this right now – because Bluey is my little friend.


There is only one problem with my pretty little bird, Bluey. Although she looks pretty, Bluey is very possessive of me and is a vicious little thing to boot.


Problematically, because Bluey coos so beautifully and arches her back like a cute little feathered cat every time she sees me as a way of asking for a pat, my children have yearned to make Bluey their friend too. The only problem with this is that the darling little bird has decided that she hates my children with a vengeance – for no apparent reason – and if they come anywhere near her cage she tries to eat them, which is quite a painful experience for the child as Bluey has a very painfully sharp beak!


One of my sisters and my sister-in-law also, tells me that you can never trust a cat – or a bird – because they have no loyalty… They are obviously “dog-people”…


Recently, however, for reasons that we shall never truly understand, Bluey has decided that she will tolerate my husband as her second favourite person in the house. This means that Bluey is happy to eat a piece of fruit from my husband’s hand, and she is also happy also to hop from my shoulder onto his shoulder when I am walking around the house. Bluey’s newfound appreciation of my husband does not – for reasons only known to Bluey herself – extend to allowing my husband the privilege of placing the piece of fruit into her cage. As soon as he tries to put his hand into that cage, Bluey goes on the attack and has caused some quite nasty injuries with that sharp beak of hers!

While I was saying my prayers today, I suddenly gained some insights about this little bird of mine.

After all, I love that bird very much – she is like a member of the family – although obviously she is only a mere bird. And yet, because she can harm my children, I am always careful to keep some distance between the bird and the children. After all, if I left her to it, Bluey would happily draw blood – and has done so on more than one occasion…


God is not like this at all. For in this analogy, we are the bird, and I am God.


Just think abut it for a minute…


I imagine that God becoming Man would be similar in some way to my children being reborn as birds like Bluey.


Now, let us think about what that would mean for my children and for me.


Firstly – if we run through this analogy – I would have to give my children permission for this rebirth as birds. After all, here they are as perfectly good human children, and there is no real need for them to be born as bird-children, unless there is something they could do to make the bird population more attractive to me in some way. There is not much difference in God the Father approving the willing sacrifice of His Beloved God the Son – who became a Perfect Man for love of us to atone for our sins and make us more attractive to our Heavenly Father…


My bird-children would have to live inside a cage all their earthly lives – because Bluey is forced to live inside a cage. This is not so different from Christ, who as God the Son, allowed His DIVINITY to be constrained within Human form and restricted to the cage created by time and space, for love of us.


Now occasionally, my bird-children would have the chance to climb up onto my shoulder, just as Bluey does. But because I cannot hug a bird, and I cannot kiss one goodnight, and because I cannot even speak bird-language and birds cannot really speak mine – although they would still have the opportunity to remain close to me – the closeness would not feel the same and it would always be a little bit lacking. After all, they could probably follow basic commands, but I would not be able to explain things in more detail to them – they simply would not understand as bird-children. This is just like Christ. Christ prayed to His Beloved Father and sent us His Beloved Holy Spirit. But how different those prayers would have felt when compared to the prayers He prayed in Communion with Them in Heaven. Just as our prayers here on Earth feel different, because we cannot understand the Divine Language of God.

And my bird-children’s lives would be shorter too – because little parrots like Bluey do not live as long as most average humans. Christ too, traded infinity for a measly 33 years. But what wonders He worked and what salvation He wrought in such a terribly short time… He changed the course of eternity in 33 years.

Bird-children would have a really different diet from human-children – after all, little parrots like Bluey mostly eat seeds, pellets and a little fruit – and so the joys of a delicious steak, grilled piece of fish, or even a creamy desert or cup of coffee would be lost to children born as birds. Christ missed out too when He was in His Human form. He lived as a perfect Man, which means that He missed out on the greater glories of Heaven while He endured the realities of the Earth.


In short – Christ sacrificed more than we could ever imagine to be become a little bird like us… Because His Father – who loved Him INFINITELY, allowed His Beloved Son to become smaller to Him than a bird – just so that we other birds could peck Him to death…


Oh My Lord and My God… What a terrible terrible love you have for us…

What a terrible love…


For with prayer, I stand on Holy Ground where everything is clear. Here. At the Foot of the Cross.

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