A Spiritual Lesson from Sleeping Baby Robins

I notice something so odd. The baby robins sleep with their mouths open. It’s funny; their beaks hang out of the nest, open to the wind, as they close their eyes in rest.

I watch their soft feathers move up and down in the rhythms of sleep. It’s so peaceful and cozy. It’s so restful. 

And that beak stays open. It’s like the chicks say, “I’m just gonna sleep right here. You go on and bring me my food whenever. I’m ready for food, but I’m also sleeping.”

When one normally thinks of hungry robins with their mouths wide open, the dominant image is one of a straining, squalling, chick whose beak opens in desperation. It’s a begging sort of picture that feels frantic and urgent. It’s a picture of starvation and fear.

But the correct picture–since baby robins sleep so much of the day and the parents return over 100 times in that day with food–is one of rest.

The mouths stay open in rest, and I imagine they sleep securely in anticipation of sure nourishment coming. For most of the day, they don’t strain or beg.

They sleep with an open mouth. It’s a posture of gentle rest that knows food will come. It must. That’s the way of things with robins.

I want to rest with an open heart to the Lord’s provision. I want to take on the true rest of Jesus and stay snug and cozy in the boundaries of this nested life. I want to live most of my day in light of sure provision.

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