Philippians 1:7 – Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace. (KJV)
About mid-way along our morning walk, my dog and I came upon a beautiful big red-breasted robin on the road. It was dead — probably pounced upon by some neighbourhood cat.
My pockets always possess plenty of bags for that which my dog leaves behind, so it was easy to pick up the robin to take home to bury rather than leave it to whatever else might befall it, and I didn't mind that it meant carrying it for quite a distance. Upon picking it up, I wondered if it would be as easy to do the same for a rat. Just the thought sends shivers down my spine and makes me wince. I am reminded that all creatures are creations of God and serve some purpose, and so it should follow that whether robin or rat, they should each receive the same respect with regards to their disposal.
How like life that scenario is! It is far easier to befriend those who are pleasant-mannered, pleasantly dressed, clean shaven; who, like the robin, "sing life's songs beautifully". It is far easier to readily accept jobs that are to our liking; to put ourselves in situations that are fun, interesting and pleasant; to give of our time when it suits us best. Do we treat each one whom we meet as a robin or as a rat?
When we are faced with whatever is placed upon our path, do we accept only that which is palatable to us, leaving that which is distasteful to be dealt with by someone else?
It is through living by His word that we are given the grace to face what we sometimes would rather not do.
Prayer: Our gracious Father, we know that life doesn't always deal us only what we would wish to do, for we know that we grow through our challenges. May we remember to be gracious to all that is put in our path. In your name we pray. Amen.