Like a Dove in a Glove

Our front porch has 2 support pillars. I just realized last week they as they come out from under the porch roof, the remaining top is open all the way to the bottom of the pillar. I discovered this after walking outside and hearing the sound of fluttering wings coming from inside the pillar. A bird had gotten into it and was stuck at the bottom. Of course, I had no idea how large it was or what type. There was no way to see in.

I got a ladder and tied a small rope to the end of a tubular box and lowered it down the 8 or so feet. After multiple attempts to “catch” the bird into the box, all I got was some feathers.

Next, I tried a tennis ball net, hoping to get the bird somehow captured into it. No go.

Had the bird understood I was trying to save it and realized my crude devices were actually its rescue, it would have tried to grab on with its talons or beak or even step into the net. But I’m certain it just thought the box and the net were a threat to its life and it was not about to cooperate with either. Ignorance of my intent and its own survival instincts kept it trapped.

After looking through the house and searching the garage, I could come up with no more available options to place down into the tube for capture.  So, I had no choice left, I had to go with what I thought would work, but could potentially hurt the bird, yet I knew with 90 degree days, it wasn’t going to last long in there anyway.

I went to Wal-Mart and bought a mouse glue trap. I punched a hole in the end and lowered it down. As I slowly pulled up, the trap was heavy. I knew I had it. Fluttering commenced, as I carefully pulled the trap to the top of the opening. There was a large dove stuck to the trap. With glove on hand, I gently secured the bird and came down from the ladder. Setting the dove down on the grass, it flapped hard and the trap fell away, taking a number of feathers with it.

I reached down and picked the bird up, held it skyward, gave a tossing motion, and it flew off. Was it hurt? Not certain. Could it fly? Yes. Would it have died in the pillar it was too large to fly out from? Absolutely. But was it alive with the opportunity to now live again in the open? Yes.

After rescuing and releasing the dove, I thought—how many times have I gotten myself into a situation where I am stuck, with no idea how to get out and God has attempted rescue, but I am ignorant of His intent or rely on my own misguided instincts. In so many ways, I have acted just as that dove did. Until finally, God sent the glue to gather me, which hurt when some skin peeled off with it, but I was once again alive and free.

With this real-life illustration, I’m going to work on trying to recognize rescue when He comes and not assume harm so easily or rely on poor instincts, only keeping me in my predicament longer with the threat of greater harm.

Sometimes it takes a painful experience to make us change our ways. —Proverbs 20:30 GNT

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