Have you ever taken time to close your eyes, hold your face to the sunshine and feel the strength of its rays penetrate through your skin? Deep enough to wrap your heart in a warm, cozy blanket?
I love to see mourning doves and robins sunbathe outside my office window. They stretch out their wings and tail and expose them to the warm rays of the sun.
Why do they do this? For the warmth? I was curious, so I researched and found there are various reasons birds sunbathe. I was especially awed by the most important of them. They stretch out their wings and fluff up the feathers on their backs and heads so that as much of their plumage and skin as possible will be exposed to the sun’s rays. There are tiny parasites that can infect their feathers and cause problems with their flight and insulation, thus affecting their survival. The heat of the sun drives these insects out of their hiding places so birds have easier access to them when they preen. Amazing how God created these survival skills, isn’t it?
Parasites get their food from or at the expense of another. What parasites do we have in our lives? What parasites eat away the life and energy of our spirits and infect us with negative feelings and lies?
There are so many of them, so I’ll only mention two of them that especially settle in deep and infect my spirit, that inhibit me from flying free in Jesus.
Insecurity eats away our confidence and pulls us back into a shell of “I can’t. I’ll never be good enough.”
Shame poisons our perspective and degrades us with “Something is wrong with you. You are nothing but ugly scum. You’ll always be deficient, defective, and worthless as a human being.”
It seems a lifelong process to get rid of them and keep them out. But we can learn so much from sunbathing birds. Like the heat of the sun dislodges the parasites, so the sunshine of God’s love can drive out those latched-on parasites that unsettle our spirits.
If birds don’t expose the parasites to the sun’s heat, the pests will devour their ability to fly and to survive. Likewise, if we don’t expose all our parasites to the (Son)shine of God’s love, we will remain miserable. Merely existing. Not thriving. Not feeling the fullness of His love. Not flying free in Jesus.
After the sun’s heat dislodges the parasites in birds, they further preen them out or they will slip right back into their hiding places again. So we need to keep on preening ourselves with God’s promises of who we really are in Him, always on alert for the devil who loves to send insecurity and shame right back into the deep recesses of our hearts.
Yes, our hearts can get so weary. Our spirits are willing, but our flesh is weak. We long for deeper healing, for the extermination of those parasites, but we can feel so helpless and hopeless.
But Jesus cares. He knows our weakness and longs for us to grab onto His strength. The sunshine of His love is always shining with warmth and healing. He yearns for us to open our hearts, to expose all those parasites to the (Son)shine.
My precious child
In Me you are
Of great value
Trust me My beloved
Open your heart
To My love
My love has power
To heal you
To give you
Freedom to fly
“His brightness is like the sunlight;
He has [bright] rays flashing from His hand,
And there [in the sunlike splendor]
is the hiding place of His power.”
Habakkuk 3:4 AMP
“But for you who revere My name,
the Sun of righteousness will rise
with healing in its rays.
And you will go out and
frolic like well-fed calves.”
And [I pray] that the eyes of your heart
[the very center and core of your being]
may be enlightened [flooded with light by the Holy Spirit],
so that you will know and cherish the hope
[the divine guarantee, the confident expectation]
to which He has called you, the riches of
His glorious inheritance in the saints (God’s people)”
Ephesians 1:18 AMP
“Who I Am in Christ”
Linking up with:
Holley – Coffee For Your Heart
Jennifer – Tell His Story
Kelly – Cheerleaders of Faith
Barbie – Weekend Whispers