But those who wait for the Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up [close to God] as eagles [mount up to the sun]~Isaiah 40:31 (AMP)
Several years ago I learned a valuable life lesson from a bald eagle. I was out jogging one day in the park and somehow found myself right in the middle of an elementary field trip. I decided to stick around and see the bird show that was about to take place. There were tons of children there as the workers from the wildlife organization unloaded all the bird cages from several large SUV’s. To make a long story short the last bird that was brought out on display was a huge Bald Eagle with a wing span well over 8ft wide. As he came out of the cage I noticed he had a chain around his leg, and as he stretched out his wings you could clearly see that one of his wings was broken.
The head instructor (let’s just call him the Keeper) began to tell the story of Sammy the Eagle. He said one day Sammy was soaring high in the sky and mad a bad decision. He decided to swoop down and feed off road kill in the middle of the road. He said it was a bad decision because Eagles do not normally eat road kill, but only hunt live animals. As Sammy was eating the road kill, a car came around the corner and hit him, hence the broken wing Sammy now had.
As the keeper kept talking about Sammy all of a sudden the sun came out through the clouds that day and began to shine down on the entire group. Immediately Sammy began to spread his wings as if to strike a pose for what seemed like 20 minutes. The Keeper then began to explain to us that Sammy was soaking in all the vitamins and nutrients from the sun that he needed to continue to restore his strength. He then went on to explain that over a period of time eagles will collect junk and debris in their wings that weighs them down and as they continue to age they begin to develop a film over their eyes which clouds their eagle-like vision. When they reach this stage of their life they immediately begin to fly as high as they can towards the sun. They get closer than any bird can go. They get so close that the rays and heat from the sun begins to burn up the debris that’s been weighing them down and it burns off the film that had developed over their eyes and their strength and vision is renewed.
3 Things I learned from Sammy the Eagle
1) Making a bad decision doesn’t disqualify you from being God’s son or daughter. We have all made a decision at one time in our lives in which we suffered undesired consequences for our actions. It doesn’t mean your life is over. Sammy made a bad decision but it didn’t stop him from being an eagle.
2) Just like eagles can be weighted down with junk and debris, I believe we also at times are weighted down with junk and debris from our past. Failures, mistakes, hurts, bitterness and rejection can all play a part in causing us to become overwhelmed and give up. They can also cause us not to clearly see God’s vision for our lives.
3) Eagles get close to the “sun” to get the relief that they need and their vision restored. I believe for us to find restoration we also must get closer to the “SON”, Jesus Christ. We must press in to HIM and allow his presence to relieve us of the burden of our past, the debris of yesterday and the mindsets that have clouded our vision.
At the end of the presentation I began to feel sorry for Sammy. I even thought he was less of an eagle because he could no longer fly the friendly skies. As soon as I said those words, a helicopter came and landed in the middle of the field where we were. The Keeper took Sammy on his arm and said goodbye to all the kids and said that Sammy no longer has to spend all his energy flying around on his own, but now he flies in style in a helicopter and we are flying him to his next appointment across town. WOW!