Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Invisible Wall

“A flash of harmless lightning, a mist of rainbow dyes, the burnished sunbeams brightening, from flower to flower he flies.” John Banister Tabb

Last summer, I walked through my garage and heard a noise coming from behind the window blinds. It sounded like an oversized bumblebee—or a miniature power tool. Along with the hum, I heard a tap, tap, tap. The little creature was beating itself to death against the closed window, when he only needed to back up and exit the way he came in—through the open garage door.

We have this problem every summer. No doubt, the hummingbirds are attracted by anything red in the garage. They hover around my van’s taillight trying to discern if it is a food source.

Hummingbirds are the only bird that can fly backwards. I could list many amazing attributes about this beautiful creature, but no matter how magnificent, its design is also limiting. One trait in particular—fear, causes the hummingbird to ignore its God-given instinct to simply back out of a situation it shouldn’t be in.

Horrified that the bird would tap the window until it died, I grabbed a rake. After several careful attempts to free the bird without stressing or injuring it, I guided it away from the closed window back to the open garage door. Was it relieved? I doubt a bird has the capacity to feel relief, but it went on its merry way, to the next red bloom or taillight that caught its attention.

Sounds familiar. How often do we insist on following a path in pursuit of something that turns out to be a counterfeit blessing, much like the taillight is to a hummingbird? We see the end of the path—the objective we’re after—so we keep beating our head against the invisible wall to reach it. Though we could take a step back and reassess our objective and the means to achieve it, we refuse to do so.

God grabs our shirttails and tries to rein us in. We try to wriggle out of His grasp.

“But, God, I see the prize. If I try hard enough, work hard enough, sacrifice enough, I’ll get there. Don’t pull me back. Here’s a better solution—Remove the invisible wall.”

Because we know best, right? And removing the barrier would be best.

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6
Challenge yourself to take that step back into the arms of God. Trust Him to get it right!

“God always gives His best to those who leave the choice with Him.” Jim Elliot

Please leave your prayer requests in the comment section below. If you have a confidential request, my contact info is above. Past requests include:
·      Unemployment and potential home loss/foreclosure
o   Tony and Betty
o   Mike and Karen
o   Anonymous
·      Health – Pray specifically for healing, comfort, strength, and wisdom in treatment for
o   Courtney, young mother with cancerous brain tumor
o   Karen, leukemia
o   TC’s father-in-law who has cancer
o   Several people with depression and other mental health issues
·       Difficult family situations, including salvation of children and freedom from addictions.
·      Christian singer/songwriter Aaron Shust’s infant son Michael who has Down’s Syndrome had reconstructive heart surgery Monday. He came through the surgery and is off the ventilator. Please keep the Shust family in your prayers. Aaron’s wife Sarah shared a journal post with the same premise I used a few weeks ago—laying your Isaac on the altar and trusting God’s plan. Her post only takes a moment to read. I hope you are as blessed as I was by it.
Take a moment to enjoy this song by Rich Mullins, "Hold Me, Jesus."

God bless,


  1. Laura, thanks for this perspective. I didn't know hummingbirds could back up. Thanks too for the song... love it.

    1. You're welcome, Janet. I'm glad you enjoyed the post. Thanks for stopping by.

  2. It's amazing how often we pursue what we think is best- wonderful analogy! Thank you.

    1. You're welcome. Always good to hear from you.

  3. wise words as always laura. thank you for your dedication to this site.

    please continue to pray for tony's job need - he may have a job with a small company that does not have a good reputation. he will probably take it IF it is even offered but he will continue to look for something better.

    karen and mike - she is doing some better but not yet back to her home state.

    amiee compeland - the 24 yr old who has the flesh eating disease from an accident.she has lost a leg and hip so far. she is doing some better but may still lose her other foot and both hands.

    thanks to all who pray.

    1. Thanks, Betty. I'm glad my blog is an encouragement to you. I will continue to pray for your prayer needs. Hopefully, Aimee's situation will turn around soon. It's so sad. There is a woman in Greenville (30 miles from here) who has the same thing. She just gave birth to twins. After she went home from the hospital she noticed a spot about the size of her palm on her thigh. She is a paramedic and nurse, so she knew what it was. By the time they got her into surgery, the place had spread to cover her whole thigh. They removed a lot of tissue, but she still has her leg. She's in serious condition. Scary stuff!

  4. I love this story and how it relates to our stubborn tendency to bang our heads against the wall. I’m going to ask God if I’m doing this in any areas of my life today. Thanks also for sharing this on B&BB. I’m always glad to have your posts included. May your week be blessed. I’m writing this on a train from Budapest, Hungary to Zagreb, Croatia. I don’t have internet, but I opened up your blog post before the trip so I could read it while traveling. And I’ll paste my comment into a comment box when we arrive. So I’m reading your blog and thinking of you across the globe!

    1. Thanks, Gail. What an honor that you would think about my blog while en route. I love the image you created of traveling across the globe! I appreciate being included in B&BB. My prayers and thoughts are with you! God bless.

  5. Hi Laura, Am visiting from B&BB this week. I, too, did not know hummingbirds could back up. I like this analogy. I think in "word pictures" so now each time I become determined to "do it my way" cause I truly believe it is best, I will think of the hummingbird and stop and pray again. Blessings.

    1. Thanks, Lynn. I'm so glad you stopped by for a visit. Even with the smallest creatures in God's creation, we can learn something! I look forward to hearing from you again. God bless you.