Wednesday, March 14, 2012

For A Certain Sort Of Kindred Spirit

Does the rain have a father?
Who fathers the drops of dew?
From whose womb comes the ice?
Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens
when the waters become hard as stone,
when the surface of the deep is frozen?
Job 38:28-30

Snow fell like eiderdown. White powder soft on the hard, crusty leavings of a winter not yet finished with us. The ravens were out. Two on a light pole all ruffled like coiffed nuns, black feathers sticking out around their necks. A few knocks, some trills and a lift off. One left behind a gift.

It would have been easy to miss the delicate grey-black feather in the snow. The falling flakes would have interred the airy offering in a few more unobserved moments but it fell to earth while we were watching. John found it intact.

I looked at the feather and God winked at me.

I blew on that graceful flag and the ends moved gently tickling one another. Hairy parts waiving like anemones before disappearing into more contoured parts. A special feather for warmth and shape. A semiplum. There He was the God of a bell and a pomegranate* crooking His finger biding me closer, eyebrows raised, smiling, offering me the kind of access that always has me at Hello.

Now there are different types of feathers for different functions. Feathers for flight, for shape, for warmth. Specialized feathers that break off on the ends, like paper towels from a dispenser, to keep birds clean that search for food in unsanitary places. Bee resistant feathers to protect honey buzzards from stings. Feathers like snow britches for sitting on bare branches at fifty below. Feathers for ventilation, for air conditioning. Feathers to stop. Feathers to go. Feathers as engagement rings. Feathers as nest furnishings. Feathers that draw me in and say "His hand was here."

Some part of my spirit said, "Pay attention. Don't miss it. There is glory here. Glory laying lightly on the new snow. Glory in a feather. Glory in my grasping how much He cares, how much He does, how completely what belongs to Him has His attention. How eloquently He speaks in whispers as well as shout outs. I love the mystery of this subtle God. The God who beckons me with feathers on fallen snow. The God who says, "Kathy, see my signature? See my thoughtfulness? See the lengths I have gone to so that the raven is clean and warm and beautiful? Do you see the bells and the fine embroidery? See what I am capable of? Do you see how much I love you?"

I laid my palm over the feather and closed my hand over His hand.

There are devotions urging us to look up and see God in the bold stars, the clouds full of thunder. There are equally insightful ones urging us to look down and behold the smallest signatures. This is a blessing a step beyond that to look into God. Let yourself be captivated by the delicate, careful planning, the colorful, useful touches that speak of Him. Look into God and see Him for the Lover He is. Creation was made for His Beloved. It is a gift full of artistic goodness, practical applications and whimsy. He is there at every turn revealing secrets. Revealing His heart. Spilling the beans about the treasure.

A whisper in the snow was a kiss.

A little spark to melt my heart.

A certain sort of kindred spirit will understand.


* In Exodus 28 we see God's careful and exquisite design for holy clothing worn to minister before the Lord. He was a God full of details who designed a hem with alternating gold bells and colorful embroidered pomegranates.

(Happy Birthday, Kimbery, Thoughtful Daughter, Treasure Seeker, Spiritual Anthropologist.)

Cornell Bird Site Link


  1. Replies
    1. Oh, it really is, huh? When I wrote it I thought this was how I felt when my dad took me as a child and had me dance with him while I stood on the tops of his shoes and he whirled me around the room.-Thanks for looking, Tara.

  2. "To see a World in a Grain of Sand
    And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
    Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
    And Eternity in an hour..."
    -William Blake

    Creation...the gift that keeps on giving! :)
    I'm so happy you wrote this!