Devotional,  Musings

His Eye Is On the Sparrow

It was a relaxing Saturday afternoon, and evening was just a breath away. Stepping into the family room, I looked out at the window feeder and spotted what appeared to be a baby house finch sitting inside. Looking a little lost and with seed remnants covering his beak, he cried for his momma. She did not come. He ate a bit then cried some more, not moving from his bed of birdseed.

I settled into my favorite reading chair with a half-read book, feeling sorry for this little bird but helpless to do much for him. I couldn’t hear his pitiful cries for his mother, but I could see it. Where was she? As I continued to watch, another bird landed on the feeder. Is this her? No! This other bird pecked and bullied the baby until the wee one flew a short distance to the railing of the back porch.

Trying to concentrate on the page before me, I kept glancing up and soon saw the baby back in the feeder. He was clearly alone. A bit troubled but content to know that he could at least feed himself and fly, I continued to read. Suddenly I heard a thumping sound and looked up to see this baby bird on his back, flailing and struggling. What happened?!

Jumping up and racing to the window I watched in horror as his thrashing caused him to fall out of the feeder to the ground below, still struggling. Still, no doubt, scared. I couldn’t get outside fast enough, but it was too late. The impact from the fall had surely broken his tiny neck. Picking up the lifeless body of this precious baby bird, I couldn’t help but sob. Why did his mother leave him? Was he ill? What happened to cause his struggle? Still, I knew that God had taken him. Yes, God had taken him. 

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.

Matthew 10:29
Not even this bird fell to the ground without our Father knowing.

Not one sparrow—or one finch—falls to the ground without our Father knowing. This little helpless, dependent creature was known by God—the God we, if we are His, call Father. What comforting words Jesus brings to us in this verse! His eye is on the sparrow.

We have all encountered times when we felt helpless and the reality is we are always dependent on our Father. It is unfortunate that we don’t usually acknowledge this dependency until we do feel helpless, realizing we cannot traverse our situation in our own strength.

In these times of weariness and hopelessness, well-meaning friends often offer such words as, “God is sovereign” and “God takes care of His own.” It is true, He is and He does, and if we belong to Christ we know this intellectually. Yet in those flailing moments, we do not always feel it practically. It is in these times that we must remember the words of Scripture:

Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Matthew 10:31

If our loving, gracious Father cares for these mundane, plain birds of the air, would He not care for His own sheep even more? The sparrow and the finch, who were not created in God’s image, are known and watched by God. What does this say to us, who were created in the image of the God? Are we not of more value?

I love this Jesus, this One who tenderly reminds me of His care for me. I love this One who cares for the lowliest of His creation. I love this One who knew me and died for me anyway. His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

I pray you know this Jesus. He is a gentle, loving Shepherd who cares for His flock in ways we do not deserve. He desires that none be lost, that none would fall to the ground without knowing Him. 

Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come,
Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heav’n and home,
When Jesus is my portion? My constant Friend is He:
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free,
For His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

“Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear,
And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears;
Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise,
When songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies,
I draw the closer to Him, from care He sets me free;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

—Civilla D. Martin

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