- March 3, 2020
- Posted by: Carolyn Mahal
- Category: Devotions
The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. – Deuteronomy 31:8
For as long as I can remember I have been taught that the sighting of the first robin was the sure sign that spring had finally arrived. Because winter’s frigid temperatures eliminate most of the robin’s food supplies, it makes sense that before they show up, the weather will have to have changed enough to sustain them. I know what you’re thinking – another brilliant insight. Next, he’ll regale us with stories of how the sun comes up in the East every morning and other obvious facts. But before you seriously doubt why you began reading this devotion, let me point out something I learned about robins. Not all robins migrate south for the winter.
I never realized this until only a few years ago. In fact, one chilly morning this past January, I pointed out a robin hopping about near my daughter’s school. I pointed it out to her and then enjoyed watching her fake interest long enough to not appear rude before quickly escaping into the school, safely delivered from me and my boring observations.
Undaunted by this, I took a moment to think about the situation (with the robin – my parenting skills would take too long!)
The struggles we face in life have a way of lingering like winter weather. It can be cold, leaving us holed up and waiting for a break that never seems to come. Our mind tells us that the seasons will change, that warmth and sunshine are coming. This is a good thing, because every now and again we need to be reminded of those things. Even a promise of warmth can help us to endure the unrelenting chill of winter. We need to be reassured that even though it may take a little longer, spring is on the way. That’s where things get tricky. For many, the return of the robin and the signs that accompany it can become the most important thing. We put so much of our hope into searching for the robins that we forget to realize that the robins are still here. We may not see them as often. We may not know exactly where to look. But we know that they are here because they never left.
In our weakness, we convince ourselves that the love and promises of God are similar to the migration patterns of birds – here today but at other times missing. However, the words of Deuteronomy 31:8 provide us with God’s clear and irrefutable promise. We should never doubt God or His promises. We shouldn’t waste time and energy wondering when He will arrive. He is here; today, tomorrow, and forever. God is with us: leading, directing, and guiding us to the place He has prepared for us while at the same time, His Holy Spirit is working to prepare us for it.
May we never lose sight of the robins around us as we head toward a future of warmth in Christ.
Devotion by Richard Schumacher
LSEM Director of Programs & Services