An Eye In The Sky

March 31, 2017
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Listen while you read: "The Lord's My Shepherd"1 (Lyrics)

2 Chronicles 16:9a – For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him. (ESV)

Every spring, robins built a nest under our deck above our back door. We use this door as our main entrance, and the patio is a place to relax as well as a work area. A busy spot, it seems a strange place to nest, but the birds weren't bothered — I could stand on a chair and take close-up photographs.

The robins would rebuild their previous nest and had two, often three families each year. When we heard tiny cheeps, we knew that the babies had hatched. They grew so fat that they were bigger than the adults. On the day that they left home, they all hopped and fluttered on the beams above us. The babies were unsure, but the parents encouraged them with much twittering, and suddenly, they were away. But our tenants would soon return, ready to start another family.

For many years, there was another bystander watching all this. The deck was our old cat's favourite spot. One of Bandit's pastimes for hours on end was to peer through a crack between the boards, directly above the nest. No more than six inches from the baby birds, he showed no desire to reach them. If they were aware of him, they gave no sign. Perhaps they knew that he was no danger to them.

However, if a squirrel or chipmunk approached, the parents would make a big fuss. The noise attracted Bandit's attention. He'd poke his head through the railings to check out the situation, and his movement would scare the intruder away. Was it inadvertent, or was he really protecting the little family?

Bandit died in the fall of 2015 at age seventeen. Last spring, the robins came as usual, but they nested only once. They left and didn't come back. Did they realize that their protection was no longer there? I often wondered what the birds thought of that eye in the sky, constantly watching them from above. It reminded me what God says in the Bible:

Psalm 32:8 – I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. (NIV 2011)

We can't see Him, but God's eye is watching us. If you are someone who is afraid of God, imagining Him as a kind of cosmic policeman watching and waiting to catch us out, the Bible tells us instead that God is a Father Who has His loving eye on us. He provides all that we need and protects us. The most oft-repeated promise in the Bible is Do not be afraid. The Psalms tell us that we can take refuge in the shadow of His wings — as under a mother bird. We can go about our lives and be assured that He has His eye on us — like my old cat on guard. How precious is His steadfast love!

Prayer: Father in heaven, Your eye is always on us. You know exactly what we need, and You promise to provide. Thank You for Your steadfast love. Amen.

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About the author:

JJ Ollerenshaw <>
Belleville, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Very comforting JJ.

    Beautifully written, thank you.

    Thanks for these comforting thoughts.

    Well done. Good story re cat, robins, etc.

    One of the neatest devotionals that I have ever read! Thank you.

    Great narrative re your deck family! Wonderful spiritual reminder too. Thank you.

    JJ, I really enjoyed this devotional. Keep up the good writing!

    Thanks for an interesting and encouraging word this morning JJ.

    I loved reading your devotion giving us another perspective on God’s watchful, providential care. Thank you.

    Thanks JJ for sharing this experience with us and drawing such an encouraging message from it. Blessings.

    Thank you so much. For some reason this devotional had me burst into tears. Utter gratitude, I think. A wonderful reminder of His love.

    Hello there. Thank you for the wonderful message today on Daily Devotional. Also, music with The Lord’s Prayer. What comforting thoughts you sent. Blessings to you.

    Hello J J,
    What a beautiful story for today’s devotion, I enjoyed it. May God continue to inspire you as you do his daily work.

    Hi. My version of Psalm 32:8 says: “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” Either version, and there are others too, give me all I need. What a gracious promise.

    Dear JJ,
    Thanks for the thought for today as a reminder of God Love. Often, we plough through the day and get to the end forgetting that God is for us, and watching over us, to keep us safe.

    What a lovely story.
    I have 4 cats and have had others and I am quite sure Bandit was protecting that little family and the birds knew it.
    I appreciate your spiritual interpretation as well. God also sends others to protect us and help in times of need.

    Your devotional reminded us of the many years when robins nested on the top of our living-room window-frame. We watched many fledglings take their first ‘flight’….and they built a new nest on top of last years until there were 3 precariously perched there!
    Our house overlooks a golf course. We love being in the country.
    Thank you.

    Dear JJ Ollerenshaw,
    Thank you for your “Safe in the arms of Jesus (watch-cat) devotional.
    The neighbors’ cats, that think they own my yard, are usually the menace. I watched a migrant flock of juncos settle in my yard this morning to enjoy picking at last fall’s fallen crabapple remains– until a cat came sneaking slowly in from the back corner of my yard. I opened my door and it ran. I have to be the “watch-cat” to save the birds here.
    I wonder if your cat was quite unique in guarding birds.
    Squirrels are a menace to birds in my yard too.
    Keep writing.

    Thank you for a beautiful inspiration.

    This is a heart-warming account, especially for animal lovers. Sometimes I think they are more caring of the weak creatures than some humans.
    I loved this and hope you write many more.

    Hello JJ Ollerenshaw,
    Thanks for contributing the devotional “An Eye in the Sky.”
    I just love to read the devotionals that have a personal interest in nature/the things God has created and how mankind views them.
    I was encouraged by your writing, keep it up you are ministering to sooo many people.

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