bird on the wire

Imagine you’re a blackbird with a bright gold beak, perched on a wire high above the street.  You tilt your head, look up at the blue, blue sky, and you can’t help it.  Your mouth opens, and a song pours from your throat.  

What the blackbird does when he sings is what each of us does (or could be doing) every day.  The thing you can’t help doing, the thing you can’t stop doing, whatever naturally pours out when you look at God and allow His creativity to flow through you - that’s your song, and only you can sing it.  I can’t sing your song.  You can’t sing mine.  But I need your song, and you need mine.  And we need everyone else’s, too; God created us to live in community with one another.  

Remember, finding your song and singing it is necessary to the health of your soul, and the rest of us need to hear you.  As Heather Sellers says, 

“The world is improved significantly when more people know other people’s points of view.”

{Pssst…. This is why I like blogging so much - each person on the planet can put their voice online, with a look and feel they can customize, and now we have a worldwide community of people singing their own particular songs.  We’ve always been singing, but now we can hear one another better!}

Right now, my perch is in former Soviet Central Asia.  I took this photo of a bird on a wire in front of our current rental house…  Let me tell you, ugly concrete posts are just the beginning!  But even though my surroundings are sometimes less than beautiful, when I look around at my Creator’s art and sense His nearness, I feel compelled to open my mouth - or pick up my pen - and “sing”.  For me, sometimes it’s actually music; other times it’s words that feel like music strung across a page.  Sometimes it’s playing Candyland with my kids, or cooking an extra-yummy meal, or speaking a second language with gusto… it’s all “singing”.  

It’s all art.  

Your perch might be flimsy and tenuous, your surroundings less than beautiful, but God made you to “sing” with your life.  Yes, the wire is wobbly.  It bounces and sways with every gust of wind - life is like that, unpredictable.  Even our hold on life itself is tenuous.  But God’s hold on us is not tenuous in the least.  He promises never to leave you or forsake you.  If he calls you to a new perch, he'll be with you every step of the way.  And because He's with you, you can sing.  

Where’s your perch?  Do you live in a house, an apartment, a borrowed room, a basement, a duplex, a dorm?  Maybe you have a roommate or a family of your own, or maybe you live alone.  Is your space surrounded by big city, small town, suburbia, farm country, the mountains, the beach, the prairie?  Do you step out your door into a cold climate or a hot one?  

Maybe you used to move a lot growing up, and now you’ve “settled down” with your own spouse and kids and you’ve got itchy feet.  Or maybe you grew up in the same house for 20 years, and now the person you married has to move constantly for work and you’re feeling rootless and frustrated.  Maybe, like me, you’re struggling to create rhythms and traditions for your family which are meaningful and portable.  

In this space called “The Art of Sojourning”, I want to share the ideas and lessons I’m learning on my own patch of wire, and I want to hear yours as well.  I also want to encourage you to find out what your own unique song is, and sing it.    

So, to review:

The bird is you.  And me.  

The wire is life: flimsy, tenuous, wobbly.

The concrete post is our context, our surroundings, often less than ideal or beautiful.  

The blue sky is God: His presence, His art, all around you.

The song is yours.  

Come join me here for a few minutes on my little patch of wire, and let’s sing for a while together!  


  1. Love this too! Got an e-mail I can contact you through? Call me website-challenged but I don't see a "contact" anywhere...

  2. Good point, Jen! Just created a "contact" tab especially for you :)