As I watch and listen to Tribble build up her nest, I find myself thinking about the warmth of Christ.
Tribble becomes rather vocal while nest building, as though a preoccupied housewife humming while doing daily chores. Of course, I don’t know if her delicate pops and squeaks are positive or negative, they just conjure the image of a busy satisfaction.
Her nest, though, increases in size gradually and she busily potters about looking for more nesting material. When she returns to a place previously bountiful and finds it empty, she returns to her nest to “make do”, seemingly unaware at this time of the large pile a moment’s plod away.
She wants her nest to be perfect. Deep, warm, cosy and familiar. Who could blame her? She’s still very new to us, her nest is her comfort zone.
Her antics remind me of faith and living as a child of God. Our “nest” is our heart; it starts off cold and barren, devoid of true comfort. It sits on the surface, easy to attack. It is exposed, although we try to hide it, we cannot help making others aware of its darkness and loneliness while we potter about, begging for real nesting material.
Real, soft, warm nesting material comes from Jesus alone and is the insulation for our cold hearts. Once Jesus is accepted into the “nest”, he places his guard in front. In Tribble’s case, this is her wheel. Her nest is precious and secure because of this gargantuan “protector”. Jesus is our wheel.
He stands before us in everlasting faithfulness and love (unlike Tribble’s wheel) and creates for us an ideal location for our “nest”. The barren and totally unhidden depth of ourselves don’t just become hidden, they disappear entirely beneath the shadow of Christ’s wings.
With him before us, our “heart-nest” becomes a “heart-nest” of faith, gradually delving deeper as we burrow into our relationship with God. We, although a little nervously, learn to occasionally leave the nest (though never leaving Christ) to gather soft bedding, provided by our Lord and Saviour.
This bedding is comfort, joy, peace and blessing; we fill our heart-nest to bursting as God provides more material for us to go and gather up. Our nest won’t strengthen or increase if we don’t venture out for bedding once in a while.
Sometimes we may develop of habit of going to the same spot, again and again, until the bedding is all gone. Not to say God will not bountifully provide in that place again, but he may be asking you to try elsewhere first. Like Tribble, we sometimes have to look in another place for bedding. We, however, will always go to God for it. I don’t mean looking to others for the building up of our heart-nest of faith, no, I mean that we may be asked to go to the unfamiliar in order to grow our nest in God.
Like Tribble, over-exploiting one area (and refusing to go elsewhere) can leave our nests without further growth; we can choose to either “make do” and try to live off what God has already given us, or, we can venture out in faith, with expectations high that the Lord will provide new growth, new challenges, new and clean and lovely bedding of salvation.
We, like Tribble, must remember that we also have cheek pouches we can pack with bedding on our journeys. Our spiritual cheek pouches can be filled to bursting with memories, scripture, praise and thanksgiving that will sustain us when it “feels” no bedding is about.
That is pretty cool.