Last evening when I returned from speaking to a group of wonderful young people I sat to discuss the days events with my husband. As we were sitting on the porch he spoke to me of three young robins that he had contact with after work. One of the poor babies he found dead in the yard, one had fallen from the tree and was unable to fly so he gently picked it up and sat it down over the fence and the other was also in our yard but had much better wings. This one "flew" a little bit and then scurried off through a hole in our fence. Mind you with three dogs it's very important that we keep a watchful eye out for baby birds and bunnies. We sat there and I heard the mother robin still calling for her babies. She was sitting on our wood pile in the area where the babies had at one time been. She called and called for them... perhaps calling out "where are you" or perhaps mourning the loss of one of her precious children. Robins are notorious for leaving the nest far too soon, thinking they are ready to fly. My our heart ached for her, knowing the pain of losing a child far too soon. Thanking the Lord for his creation and the grace he gives me each and every day I began to think on the subject.
Those baby robins and their mother are so like we are as humans. Those wonderful young people that I had the pleasure of addressing and talking with so like the babies robins leaving the nest too soon, unprepared for what truly lies ahead. Venturing into unfamiliar territory - drugs, alcohol... searching for their freedom not even realizing that being dependent on drugs is not being free. They step out of childhood... into young adulthood without the proper armour and without all the necessary skills yet in place. The reality of drug and alcohol abuse is you are never truly free or independent as long as they are part of your life.
What makes us feel the need to leave the nest so soon? Why when we start to hit the magic teenage years do we feel we must be so independent? Looking back I remember that feeling but now that I am much older I long to be nurtured and taken care of a bit. If only these young folks could hold onto their childhood a bit longer, enjoying it, savoring it... embracing the magic of youth.