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"As an eagle stirreth up her nest"
INEZ KOCH

 
         The observant may learn many useful lessons from nature, and the Bible abounds with similes and metaphors taken from the daily lives of plants and animals. The story of the good shepherd, the parable of the lilies of the field, of the sower and the seed, all these are well known to Bible students, and may easily be understood. But some references are not so apparent at first glance, as for instance the passage in Deuteronomy, chapter 32, verse 11. There we read, "As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings." This, as a simile of God's love and care, has a very beautiful and metaphysical meaning.

         An observer of nature had for some time been watching an eagle's nest, high up on the mountain crags, above a pine forest. From the rocks to the trees below was a long sheer drop, and the naturalist had great difficulty in climbing to a point of observation from which he could see the eagle's nest. He was finally rewarded by being able to watch therein two little fledglings just about ready for their first flight. He resolved to observe this experiment. It seemed to him that the mother bird was urging on her young ones with encouraging calls and nudges to undertake the initial journey into the world below. The two eaglets were perched on the edge of the nest, which was composed of dry sticks. At last one decided to take the plunge, and was soon floating down towards the safety of the tree tops. But the second eaglet seemed overcome with fear, and clung on to the loose sticks on the edge of the nest. The mother eagle flew round and round with little calls of encouragement and an occasional gentle push. Then she tried flying down and calling to the little one to follow; but all to no avail. There it clung, quite paralyzed with fear. Then the observer saw the mother eagle do something very surprising. She swooped down on the nest, and with a quick action of her beak pulled away the supporting twigs from under the eaglet, so that it was flung into space. Thus rudely plunged into the ether, the little fellow flapped his wings frantically, with the result that he was exhausted long before he could reach the tree tops. But ah, the wonder of mother-love! The mother eagle had been close above him all the time, and when she saw that he could go no farther without dropping, she swiftly spread her broad wings and slipped them under him until he was sufficiently rested to continue the flight, which he presently did successfully, and without further evidence of fear. He had learned to fly, and had gained in confidence and strength. What wisdom was expressed through the mother eagle, who, although stirring up the nest and seemingly doing an unkind act, was in reality bestowing a blessing!

         Who of us have not complained at the mental stir which changes our base of thought to a more spiritual, and therefore a happier and holier sense of being? We want to cling to this material thing, to that person, to anything we can behold with the physical senses, but not to be flung into what is to us still the unknown realm of Mind! Yet God, who is our Mother and is Love, is there the whole time; and if we will but trust, we shall find great and glorious blessings awaiting us. One thing we learn is that whereas, formerly, we had only a circumscribed and limited nest (human consciousness) to move in, as we take the initial flight into the realm of the real, divine Mind, we find that unlimited opportunities are before us. Mrs. Eddy writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 162), "The effect of this Science is to stir the human mind to a change of base, on which it may yield to the harmony of the divine Mind." On page 540 she says, further, "The muddy river-bed must be stirred in order to purify the stream." And she explains on the same page that "we ought to know that God's law uncovers so-called sin and its effects, only that Truth may annihilate all sense of evil and all power to sin."

         Often the uncovering of sin is a grievous process, and we think that if it had not been for Christian Science we should still be peacefully sitting in our nest! Yes, so we should! How grateful we ought to be, however, for the push, the stirring up of the nest that precipitates us from our false sense of security into God's pure air of spiritual activity, and the life-giving struggle which must eventually help us to prove our God-given dominion over the physical senses. What if, through fear, or insufficient understanding, our fledgling wings give way, and we seem to be ready to plunge into the depths of despair and destruction? It can never be so; for divine Love is ever there to uphold with mighty wing. Through each experience our fledgling wings will grow stronger, until the flight is no more down, but ever upward, as Mrs. Eddy says (Poems, p. 19): —

"My course, like the eagle's, oh, still be it high,
Celestial the breezes that waft o'er its sky!
God's eye is upon me — I am not alone
When onward and upward and heavenward borne."

 

"'As an eagle stirreth up her nest'" by Inez Koch
Christian Science Sentinel, October 18, 1924


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