The “Fable of the Birds” is a story about creation. All the newly made animals were walking around discovering what it was like to be alive — all, that is, except the birds! They stood around complaining because God had given them a heavy burden that he’d given no other animal—awkward appendages attached to their shoulders.

They thought that God must be punishing them somehow. They couldn’t figure out why they had to carry them around, making it hard to walk. “Why?” they asked. “What good are these things?” Finally, three of the more adventurous birds began to move their appendages up and down. They began to flutter them quicker and quicker, and they discovered that the very thing they had regarded as a burden actually made it possible for them to fly! Soon all the birds were soaring up into the sky. The “heavy burden” they were carrying around turned out to be a beautiful gift.

Many of us act like those silly birds. We regard God’s call to obedience as an awkward appendage to our lives — weighing us down. Thou shalt not! Thou shalt! Heavy burden it is until we discover that God’s law is really the sacred wind that enables us to fly.

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