I have recently received a new perspective regarding hope. On the 24th January 2014, at 5:30 our Alexandrine Parrot flew over the roof and disappeared like a puff of smoke. I was devastated to say the least and really struggled with losing him. I woke up really early the next morning and went for a run, calling him, calling on God and crying – I must have scared the early walkers because looking back now it was not a pretty picture. A middle-aged lady in lycra with a red nose, whistling off-key, sniffling and calling “Eddie, Big Boy” at the top of her voice. I was freaking out and trying to find him. I put up posters, phoned or emailed close to twenty vets leaving frantic messages and his details and my own. I Facebooked, ParrotAlerted and RSPCA’d him…everything. Every time I walked past his cage I could not breathe – in short I was a complete mess. I started praying, begging and pleading for Eddie’s safety and return. The school term started and I had the prayer group I lead praying for Eddie. Friends joined in and prayed, comforted and encouraged. It took me nearly six weeks to pull myself together and to move on – not give up, just move on.

I became obsessive with checking the lost pet page and  found it helpful to try to match owners and found birds, all the while praying that I could find Eddie. I continued to pray and changed my prayers to thanksgiving, thanking YHWH for the time I had with Eddie, the laughter and joy that he had brought to our family. I prayed that Eddie would bless someone else, bring them joy and laughter too. I asked God to keep His hand on Eddie, to protect and care for him.

I broke down his cages and washed and stored his toys and feeding dishes. I did not wish to sell them as I hoped he would return. I began to realise that Father hopes that we will return, that we will want to be in His presence. I realised that if we are created in the likeness of the Father, then hope is within us, hope is part of us. If Father God knows when a sparrow falls to the ground, then He knows and hopes that we will walk in His presence and that we will find the Way, the Truth and the Light.

Seven months and two weeks to the date, Eddie returned!! He had been hanging out with some Lorikeets and had been fed by an elderly gentleman every evening. A young zookeeper had been visiting her friends and saw Eddie fly overhead. She enquired about the parrot and was directed to the gentleman’s house. She went to investigate and was able to read the ID band number which she gave to the lady that I was communicating with on the lost and found website. I received a message and we contacted the gentleman immediately. After tears, prayers and excitement we prepared to recapture our prodigal feathered son.

He is at home now, we took him to the vet and the vet could not believe that this picture of health had been in the wild for seven months and two weeks. Being a domesticated, non-native bird is not good when you have crows, magpies and minor birds that are territorial. It was the hand of God that was on Eddie, protecting and keeping (Look at the birds, they do not sow nor reap yet the Father feeds them).

Hope, to hope you must love. Father loves us so much and He never gives up on His children. No matter where you are, what you have done… it does not matter. Come to the Father, He is waiting, hoping and watching out for you. If you are praying for someone to come to the Lord, DON’T give up – hope and keep praying. It is the heart of the Father to want His children to be with Him, to stay in His protection and presence. Eddie flew off because that is what birds do – fly. He was not wishing to leave us, he was excited by the birds overhead and in an impulsive birdie moment he spread his wings and with a gust of wind found himself lost. Yeshua told the parable of the prodigal son to encourage us to return to the arms of the Father. The Father that scans the horizon and waits in hope.

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