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  • Writer's pictureElpidio Pezzella

Like Eagles

But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.

(Isaiah 40:31 NKJV)

The prophet's words refer us to the flight and life of eagles to better identify those who have placed their hope in the LORD. An eagle in flight is spectacular. If you have never had a chance to see one, a quick search will help you discover some characteristics of this raptor, which are the cue for some brief considerations. First, eagles fly alone and at high altitude. At an altitude of 10,000 feet you will not encounter any other bird. If you do encounter one, it is an eagle. That is why they do not fly with crows and other small birds. Those who hope in the Lord fly high, stay away from "mediocre" people, from those who tear down and force them to fly low. A believer can also be recognized by the company he keeps. An eagle flies with eagles. Aquila non captat muscas is a Latin locution that literally means "the eagle does not catch flies". The ancient expression indicates that those who fly high do not care for small targets.

They have keen eyesight. The eagle's eyesight is four to eight times greater than ours. In fact, it can spot a rabbit three kilometers away. This characteristic suggests how a believer should have a gaze capable of going beyond all limitations, beyond all forms of appearances. At the same time it invokes "vision." A broad vision is an indispensable endowment for those who lead others. Every believer will always have a vision to lead him, to inspire him whatever obstacles he has to overcome. Therefore, like the eagle that does not feed on carrion but only eats the meat of the prey it kills and consumes fresh, a believer should spend his time with people who make informed decisions. Carrion also suggests not relying on past successes but looking for new frontiers to conquer. When a storm is approaching, the eagle senses it much earlier. It flies to a rock high above and waits there. When the storm arrives, it unfolds its wings and is carried away by the wind, keeping on top of the storm. Meanwhile, all the other birds hide among the branches and leaves. When the storms of life come upon us, we too can rise above them and ride the winds of various blizzards. We can use them to reach greater heights and those who hope in God will emerge stronger and better than before.

Eagles are faithful in the relationship of a couple. That is why they choose themselves carefully and try the other before they give themselves. Faithfulness remains the foundation of every stable relationship. The apostle Paul recommended choosing faithful co-workers, and before giving someone an assignment to try it out. To avoid unpleasant disappointments, we should always check the commitment of the people with whom we intend to relate, whether in private or in the business world. As for offspring, no bird is kinder to its young than the eagle. God himself compares himself to it: "As an eagle stirs up its nest, Hovers over its young,Spreading out its wings, taking them up, Carrying them on its wings, So the Lord alone led him,And there was no foreign god with him" (Deuteronomy 32:11-12). They thoughtfully teach those who have difficulty learning to fly especially. To urge them to spread their wings, they remove the feathers and grass from the nest so that the young feel uncomfortable and consider it unbearable to remain in the nest. There comes a time for everyone to be ready to leave the so-called "Comfort Zone". So every believer should raise the little ones, preparing and guiding them as a mother-eagle does, pointing them in the direction but also making them independent.

When an eagle begins to age (30 years old), a hard layer forms on its beak, making it swollen and sore, and preventing it from feeding sufficiently. As it eats less, it weakens, loses its desire to hunt, its talons are no longer strong, and its whole appearance suffers. The eagle, however, does not give up. With tremendous effort it retreats to the summit and faces a metamorphosis. It begins to tear off its old feathers with its beak, then by rubbing its talons against the rock it gets rid of the dead, scaly skin, and finally slams its beak vigorously against the rock until the layer of limestone crumbles away. It is a painful process, and to give himself relief he plunges into a stream. Then he returns to the rock where the sun brings warmth and healing to his body. After forty days the feathers grow back, the talons regain strength, and the beak is now healed. The eagle rejuvenates, and can do what had become difficult for another thirty years, just as the Psalm declares, "He satiates your mouth with goods and makes you rejuvenated like the eagle" (103:5). This process suggests that there are times in our lives when we need to evaluate our "health." A mature believer periodically examines himself and decides what to do, including even the possibility of retiring if he has public commitments.

Dear reader, fly. Fly high like eagles, hoping in your Lord!


Weekly Bible Reading

Plan #21

May 15, 2 Kings 22-23; John 4:31-54

May 16, 2 Kings 24-25; John 5:1-24

May 17, 1 Chronicles 1-3; John 5:25-47

May 18, 1 Chronicles 4-6; John 6:1-21

May 19, 1 Chronicles 7-9; John 6:22-44

May 20, 1 Chronicles 10-12; John 6:45-71

May 21, 1 Chronicles 13-15; John 7:1-27

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