My backyard is once again filled with activity following a strange season. No squirrels, no cardinals, no doves, no woodpeckers . . . no sounds save the annoying human generated ones!

Strange indeed to one who seeks solace in that sacred space. One who yearns to be satiated by the sounds of her Creator. One who desperately needs God’s presence and help in these days of battles in ministry among at-risk children in an impoverished neighborhood.

God’s presence can be seen and felt in the many voices of the created world. At times, in mighty displays of thunder and lightning, powerful winds. In the beauty of sunsets and breezes. In the stillness of a wind-less day, the songs of the birds. Birds who had vanished from our yard.

Several times recently my husband has seen a red-tailed hawk roaming our backyard and neighborhood. Driving to work, I saw one sitting on a lawn fiercely protecting the remnants of the squirrel he was devouring.

Why write this today? Why this simplicity of nature as our world staggers through one natural disaster after another? As the people of Haiti endure the nightmare of yet another inconceivable devastating blow. As innocents bear the horrors of destructive wars. And insanity of our current political realm does little to offer even a glimmer of hope or help.

For me it was powerfully relevant, mirrored my heart the past weeks. Immersed in the details, stress and management of getting our mentoring ministry restarted on 13 school campuses. Hearing about the tough realities of some children’s lives in my city, I have struggled. Layered with heart breaking cries to the Lord over the peoples of our world, it has been hard to keep my focus on my Lord. Keep my eyes on the hope of the Resurrection and the promises of God. To stay nestled in the strength of His might. To listen, to follow.

Why? I Know better. I have spiritual tools God planted within Scripture. I know the One who holds the world and the children in His heart. And yet, I have been sucked under by the attacks of the enemy. Weakness. Sickness. Tiredness. Feelings of inadequacy and doubts of effectiveness.

I’ve been seeing with human eyes when God wants me to look through spiritual eyes. As all Christ followers, I am filled with the God who never tires, never sleeps, and who is our Victory. I am given compassion, concern, impetus to do something by God’s Spirit. I can find God’s strength and overcome in the battles of spiritual warfare.

Warfare not against a hawk, but warfare against a predator all the same . . .

Warfare that must take place in the spiritual realm, within our inner man {woman} as the apostle Paul calls our spiritual nature, before we can engage in warfare in the world. Intercession. Listening for God voice and direction. Heeding His warnings. Obeying His call to live in light of God’s great grace, to take His love to all peoples, to enter into the suffering of others. To stand in, and share the hope of Jesus Christ with the world.

My heart and soul are filled with activity today. The sounds of God’s creatures are echoing the encouragement, strength, wisdom and presence of the One who is my strength and my song, who bids me to trust and not be afraid. Isaiah 12:2