Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Sweet fellowship


Anytime you share life stories with other people, you know, you are acknowledging their humanity and kind of accessing some things about yourself, and other people start to expect things about themselves. It's kind of like a fellowship.~Jill Scott



One of the things I love to do is play tennis. I prefer playing outdoors but the rest of my family likes to play indoors, so when I can get one of them outside to play it is quite the accomplishment. During the early spring, the weather is mild and the fragrant trees are in bloom.  Once in a while, a wonderful scented cross breeze goes through the area where the courts are. When this happens it makes it an ideal condition to play tennis, especially when there is warm sunshine and mild temperatures. 

 In fact, it is difficult to stop smiling sometimes when I play tennis outdoors, and I was told that I need to get a game face (which I am working on right now) to be taken seriously.  How easy to forget your cares on a beautiful sun filled day like this. This makes living in the Northwest worthwhile even though we don't always see the sun here, sometimes even for long stretches at a time. When the weather is good here it is really hard to stay indoors on a day off. 

 Last July was one of those days.  My heart was heavy that day with all that was going on in the news at the time, and I had an injury on my right arm so it was painful to play tennis.  The weather was so beautiful that day that my daughter finally agreed to play.

During the spring and summer time you can often see friendly swallows flying around the outdoor tennis court area. The same 5 or so friendly swallows seem to play and dart around us as if they recognize us and are glad to see us. I know this sounds impossible,  but after that day I wondered, could these birds really recognize us and enjoy our company? 



“Human fellowship
can go to great lengths,
but not all the way.
Fellowship with God
can go to
all lengths."

~ Oswald Chambers



I was really glad my daughter was there to witness an incredible moment that never happened before and has never happened again. We must of played on these courts over 30 times before and although we enjoyed the fellowship of these little birds darting past our net after every hit, I really didn't think they were responding to us personally!  We usually play for an hour and a half but that day we had to cut it really short due to my injury (tennis elbow), so admitting defeat we walked back to the car.  Just then, something remarkable happened! The same five swallows that dart back and forth across the nets when we played, circled us as we walked back to the car.  Each one gently circled us completely around, one at a time in complete order, alternating right to left about three feet from the ground.  Each one taking turns circling us exactly the same way. 

 
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We never left without playing at least an hour and these little birds seemed to notice. I went online to see if this is normal behavior for a swallow and I found a blog that shows a game that they play with each other with a feather. I could not find any evidence that they recognize people or even know their routines.  So I probably wouldn't even share this without a witness and I would have wrote it off as a "Stephanie moment". :)


“Unity is necessary to the outpouring of the Spirit of God. If you have 120 volts of electricity coming into your house but you have broken wiring, you may turn on the switch, but nothing works – no lights come on, the stove doesn’t warm, the radio doesn’t turn on. Why? Because you have broken wiring. The power is ready to do its work…, but where there is broken wiring, there is no power. Unity is necessary among the children of God if we are going to know the flow of power…to see God do His wonders.” 
~ A. W. Tozer

How many times are we so focused on our present circumstances that we don't even notice the sweet fellowship placed right in front of us?  I can image God delights in us too and circles us as if to say "I see you",
"I enjoy your company",
"I love you",
"why are you leaving"



Note to self...don't bring the dog when you play tennis!:)

Some of the most sweetest fellowships on earth are friendships, family and loved ones.  I'm sure the fellowships in heaven are even greater.










But if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.
1 John 1:7