The Bread of Life

Meet Charlie. His wings are too short to fly far, so when the other geese take flight for warmer weather, he hangs around Lake Martin for fall and winter seasons. Alone. When I first met Charlie, he was being bullied by a flock of geese. I threw out bread, but Charlie couldn’t pick it up as fast as the others because he is missing his lower beak. Because he has no lower beak, his tongue hangs out, making him look odd. To his fellow geese, Charlie is the real deal ugly duckling.

But he is beautiful to me. After seasons of patiently working to gain his trust, Charlie went from total fear and distrust, to allowing me to reach down from the dock and place food on the back of his tongue so he could easily swallow, to standing beside my lounge chair on the dock for feeding time, to tapping on my back door whenever he is hungry (photo). When I see Charlie waiting at my back door, I don’t see a flawed reject. I see a magnificent creature. And it fills my heart with joy that he trusts me, depends on me, and wants to be in my presence.

No matter how lonely, misplaced, mistreated, unloved, or rejected we may feel at times, our God loves us unconditionally and finds us magnificently beautiful, regardless of our flaws. We can be certain that when we tap on the door of his presence, his heart is filled with joy, simply because we want to be with him. And we can trust that he is always there, waiting to nurture us with the bread of life.

“Jesus declared, ‘Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.’”

John 6:35