Friday, March 14, 2014

One Cardinal at a Time

God sees the little sparrow fall,
It meets His tender view;
If God so loves the little birds,
I know He loves me, too.

He loves me, too, He loves me, too,
I know He loves me, too;
Because He loves the little things,
I know He loves me, too.

Wednesday evening I slithered home in the wind and the snow and hunkered down for the evening in our cozy home. Did I like another stormy blast in the middle of March? No. Was my life in peril or was I inconvenienced in any major way?  No.

With the time change on Sunday there was still enough light that I could see birds huddled in the swaying bushes, including the bright splash of red which was a male cardinal. From time to time these hardy creatures ventured to our feeders to refuel and then flew back to cover.

I could hear the birds the next morning as we shoveled the drifted snow in the biting cold and I thought about Pam, Belleville's bona fide street person. There are far too many people mired in poverty in this town, but Pam is the one whose issues send her to the streets even in the harshest weather. She has a mother who cares about her and other family members, but she chooses the street. She regularly shows up at Bridge St. to use a bathroom, or get a coffee, or ask for assistance. She always has some convoluted story and we don't always help her, but on occasion I just give her a few bucks for trying. She often has visible scrapes and bruises and God knows where they came from. Sometimes she is quite lucid and civil, sometimes not.

And wouldn't you know it, yesterday she showed up and I helped her out. While I wrote a cheque she had a lively conversation with herself on the pew in our entranceway. Or maybe she was chatting with God. The challenge is to see Pam as someone with beautiful plumage rather than the ragged figure she usually presents. There are the bigger justice issues of systemic poverty and food security in this country, but sometimes we can address needs one sparrow --or cardinal -- at a time.


1 comment:

Judy Mcknight said...

I am so glad Pam feels comfortable coming to our church.