The Dance of the Sand-piper
The first rays of the sun were brightening the eastern sky. Bright
emerald waves wearing white frothy caps carried the tiny crabs and star
fishes and spread them upon the sand for the screaming gulls and
nimble sand- pipers to feast upon.
I walked along the shores of Lake Ontario, enjoying the breathtaking
splendor of the beauty around me. I moved a little up on the sands and
sat down on a rock to watch the birds without disturbing them.
Suddenly a little spotted sand-piper raised her head and looked at me.
She became agitated and ran up towards me. She flapped her wings
and began a weird dance. I was curious to find out what the matter was.
When she saw me coming she fluttered off in the opposite direction. I
followed her at a distance. Then she did a strange thing. She dropped a
wing to the ground as if it was broken and started to limp. As I drew
closer she flapped her wings and flew away leaving me totally baffled.
Later that day I came to the lake to watch the sunset. I had been told
that the sunsets here were one of the best ten in the U.S.
I had brought my camera and flashlight with me. Walking
along the beach I looked for a place from which I could take pictures of
the sand, water and the sky, all clothed in the magnificent colors of the
The place I had been sitting that morning seemed to be the ideal spot. I
stayed there and took pictures until the light faded. I stood up to get a
better angle for my picture. In doing so, I inadvertently dropped my
flash light. As I stooped to pick it up I saw a small movement amidst the
Fearing that it might be a rock snake; I flashed the light in that
direction. The light caught a frightened sand-piper sitting on her nest
on the sand. From under her wing I saw a tiny head peep out. I hastily
put out the light and withdrew as fast and as silently as I could.
Now I understood why the sand-piper had used her body language to
Communicate to me that she did not want me near her little ones. She
was afraid I would harm them. She was protecting her little ones
at the risk of her own safety.
I marvel at the deep sense of responsibility and remarkable love this
little bird had for her children.
If only we had the same amount of concern for our children would we
have so many abortion clinics?
Would babies be cast out on garbage dumps?
Would toddlers be begging on the streets for food?
Would children be working in factories making tiny knots with their tiny
fingers to enhance the value of Persian Carpets?
The Psalmist said that children are the gift of God. They are a real blessing. Ps.127:3. (Good News Bible)
Jesus said, “Let little children to come me….because the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”
(Good News Bible)
Maybe there is a lesson to learn from the body language of that dance
of the sand-piper.
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