A robin has built a nest in the arborvitae outside my office window. (In the photo above, it's the barely visible horizontal mesh of dry grey grasses in the center of the shrub.) For days, I've been able to sit at my computer and watch the male robin hop around the yard gathering dried grasses and stems to use. I've been wondering what it will be like to try to write when I hear the cheep, cheep, cheep of hungry baby birds.
Then I remembered the cat. A few years ago, an abandoned black cat took up residence in the neighborhood. The people across the street feed it, but that doesn't stop it from hunting. It stalks my yard for birds constantly. It must get into fights too because one eye is perpetually shut.
So now I'm worried. That arborvitae will be so easy for the cat to climb, and there isn't much I can do to stop it. You can't go outside and talk sense to a robin, and if I move the nest, the birds will abandon it. I can run outside and chase away the cat if I happened to see it lurking, but I'm not at my computer desk 24/7. I just have to accept that I'm not in control.
The last day or so, my own life has made me feel a bit like that robin. I learned yesterday that the writing job I was offered last week might have to be split with another freelancer. (The publisher's schedules might necessitate having two writers.) I won't know the answer for a week or so, but I felt very discouraged about the possibility. Last night, I was wakeful and had to get up to pray for a while. If this assignment is cut, we'll need to find even more work to get through the summer than I thought we would.
So I feel like a robin, perched on a flimsy structure of dried straw, my whole future gathered in this nest with me, while a one-eyed black cat slinks around the garden below.
And yet . . . Jesus reminded his disciples that not even a sparrow can fall to the ground without the Father knowing of it and that we are of much more value than the sparrows. So instead of keeping my focus fearfully on the danger, I guess I'll have to lift my gaze to the heavens and trust our future once again into his care.
I'll keep you posted.