Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Valentine's Day Woodpecker

Welcome my sweet sister, Laurie Kinkaid. Her insights from nature and connection to our Heavenly Father will encourage you on this Valentine's Day.

The second storm of February 2014 is gently dropping its first inches of powder. As I sit here sipping Irish Breakfast tea, winter birds frantically peck at the seeds scattered for their dining pleasure before they are covered with snow. Except for my hubby puttering with the pellet stove and fireplace, this Valentine Eve is quiet. It's comforting to sit in my office as the outdoors gets whiter and whiter.

In sharp contrast to this peaceful atmosphere, my devotional time this morning began as a skirmish over my "sin of choice". Not something you expect to see on a Christian blog, but hang in there with me. As in His conversation with Job, God's final word in our discussion is wise, creative, loving and omnipotent.

I was talking with God about the hopelessness I feel in the face of this attack of the enemy. Satan is very familiar with this particular 'button' of mine, and knows when and how to push it. Admittedly, when I am weak, my Lord is strong; He has never left me or forsaken me and He protects me under His wings.

But, sometimes I feel like Elisha's servant, needing to see the chariots of fire around my camp. Lord, if I may be so bold, show me exactly how you are protecting me, because right now, I'm feeling pretty darn vulnerable.

The nuthatches were still busy with the seed, when in my peripheral vision, I saw a black mass moving up the trunk of an oak tree. What is that, a squirrel? No, it's a pileated woodpecker...Gorgeous!

My attention was fixated on him as he got everything he could out of that hole in the tree. At one point, a black squirrel jumped over from a nearby tree, but Woody remain unfazed.

I've been writing, eating breakfast and talking with my mom on the phone for over an hour and Woody is still head-banging the wood for 60+ minutes. What focus!

I realize that - just as deliberately as the woodpecker pecks - the Holy Spirit 'keeps at' my challenges, with out without my awareness, let alone my participation. As a matter of fact, Woody's pecking was not even audible - at one point, I narrowly opened the door to listen and heard (((Nothing))). All sound was muffled by the falling snow.

The Holy Spirit can work in our lives without a word - no fanfare, no big announcements. He simply makes the results of His ceaseless grace and mercy visible in our peripheral vision until we widen our gaze and realize how much God has done for us.

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day. As the years pass, Hubby and I pay less attention to this high holy day of romantics, because we...aren't. No flowers, no chocolate, no going out to dinner. For him, it's tax season; for me, it's the beginning of rehearsal season. This too made me think...

God's agape love doesn't have a season or take a holiday. It flows year-round, 24 -7- 365, wooing and convincing us of how much He purely, relentlessly, purposefully has our best interest in mind.

As I watched the woodpecker, he didn't cease or decrease his efforts when the wind blew, when snow swirled around him, or when the squirrel tried to muscle his way onto his tree. God cannot NOT love us. From my human perspective, I can honestly say, more often than not, I just don't get that - my love for people can be so conditional. But in my own helpless, weak, doubting state, I cling to God's promise of His love as if my life depends on it...because it does, 24 - 7 - 365.

By the way, my Valentines's Day Woodpecker is still at it. I think he's making a heart design in the tree trunk.

How have you sensed God's agape love toward you?

Dramatist, humorist, seamstress, Laurie Kinkaid "does what she does" for an audience of One, but is looking forward to bringing one of her theatre characters to speak to your group. She also works with you to create a piece of practical art that will preserve your memories in the fabrics of your life. Stop by Laurie's website at


  1. What a great experience. God's creatures are such a wonderful way for Him to speak to us.

  2. Thank you Laurie for your wonderful insight.......the faithful ever present love of our Savior. I also picked up on the NO Valentine message. Isn't it the world that really needs the giving of a Valentine. When actually, hearing about your husband working with the pellet stove, keeping everything warm, husbands that work and provide faithfully as unto the Lord really is an everyday Valentine. They are the blessing the Lord provides for us and we for them. Thank you for that reminder. Jan

  3. Barbara,
    I agree. God's creation speaks volumes; how wonderous when we are tuned in to listen.
    Thanks for stopping in and sharing your thoughts for Laurie.

  4. Thanks, Jan/Mom. Love is expressing Jesus through our hands and heart. I love the 'everyday valentine'. We are so blessed with the gift of our spouse. I'm sure this is even more evident to you now as a widow.
    Thanks for sharing your heart and wisdom--encouraging us to see our husbands in that light.

  5. Pausing over a cup of tea and seeing the wonders of our Lord is a Valentine gift for you and for Him.

    My husband and I don't celebrate the day either. Yet, we honor our love with faithfulness, loyalty, and kindness year round. We follow the Lord's lead in showing true love.

    Thank you for sharing your insight. You warmed my heart on this snowy day.

    Write on.

  6. Carolyn,

    So sweet to take the time in God's presence and to treasure the gift of your husband.
    Thanks for sharing your heart on this Valentine's Day.

  7. Laurie, thank you for sharing your honest heart. Helps remind me I'm a struggling Christian, also. Humble, that's what I got for today. :))

  8. Thanks for stopping in, Jean. I do love Laurie's transparency. Gives us all permission to share when we fall. Humble is good!


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