Thursday, April 9, 2020 -
In Psalm 103, we are told to bless the Lord with all that is within us, to bless the Lord, and forget none of His benefits.
And just what benefits are they? Verses three to five tell us: First, it is He who pardons ALL of our iniquities and heals ALL our diseases. Secondly, it is He who REDEEMS our life from the pit – from hell itself. Thirdly, He crowns us with loving-kindness and compassion. And fourthly, He satisfies our years, or desires, with good things so that our youth is renewed like the eagle!
All of these are fulfilled through Jesus Christ alone. But I’d never thought about how the youth of an eagle is renewed until R explained to me what he had learned about eagles after asking himself this very same question.
It turns out, the average eagle lives about 50 years, but age sets in at about 25 years when its talons and beaks become soft and useless and its feathers diminish. Simply put, the eagle reaches a point of utter helplessness when seemingly no point of renewing its youthful prowess and ability to even survive. It seemingly comes to the point of death. Yet it is at this very point the eagle will muster its last bit of strength to fly to the highest point, reaching a crag on a cliff. There, all alone, it begins to rub its beak upon the rocks of the ledge until it is completely worn down. It is without a beak, with useless talons for catching prey, and wings that inhibit necessary flight.
Yet it is at this point when the eagle instinctively files it beak off completely, causing certain hormones to be released, which causes the eagle to become completely regenerated. Its beak grows back, its talons are restored, and its wings renewed! Its youth is literally completely renewed allowing it to live another 25 years.
What a promise for you and me! Yet the eagle must experience immense pain as it rids itself of the old, useless beak on the rough rocks. In the same way, we must, no matter the circumstances, no matter the pain, no matter the difficulties or trials, bless the Lord with all that is within us! God may choose to, like the eagle, bring us to the point of utter uselessness and suffering, even hunger – where we are unable to help ourselves. This is where God wants us, to the point whereby we must cry out to Him in despair, recognizing that only He can save us and restore us! This is an amazing picture of God’s grace to us when we finally get to this point. It may be painful, but it is well worth it all in the end.
On another totally separate point, there is one inmate I have been at odds with since early on in my incarceration. He is a Muslim who probably weighs 400 pounds and hasn’t liked me since I proved him wrong when he told me and “E” that Jesus never claimed to be the Son of God. I have recently added this man to my prayer list, praying that the Lord would reveal Himself to him. Today, he was on the email terminal next to me, and actually asked me to type an email for him after I had finished with mine. This I gladly did, as I praised God for the opportunity to express kindness to one who is lost and an enemy of the Lord.