Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Cuckoo Bird

Spring is here; we hear the sound of the cuckoo bird and are filled with the sentiments that come with the season. The sound is plaintive and evocative of feeling. However, the bird  has the habit of laying its eggs in another bird's nest, and fools the mother birds into thinking they are their eggs. The other eggs are destroyed and the cuckoo bird monopolizes the nest. A priest writing in a pastoral bulletin tells his reader this is a shameless way of behaving, and wonders if, at times, we act in the same fashion.  

In order to prevent this from happening--where the  cuckoo male becomes the father of the birds in the  nest--makers of the nest have develop methods to  distinguish  the intruder's eggs, but in most cases they trust the  eggs to be their own, and lovingly take care of them. The mother cuckoo waits until the babies are grown and keeps on circling the nest until  they are able to live on their own and takes them. From one mountain to another in its call the cuckoo is alerting the baby cuckoos of its presence.

There is fundamental  difference between the way we deal with people and the way Jesus did: we can  consider a person as a means or as an end. Jesus gave himself completely to others. This was his love for all. Love was not merited, but  love was the reason for his life. This journey required giving, emptying himself and even the cross. We were never a means.

However, we can use God as a means to satisfy our greed, desires and egoism, but we  end up with  emptiness. We don't prize the giver as much as what is given.

This kind of person is concerned only about his fence,  family, and  resembles the cuckoo  bird  in  wondering how the nest of another will be of benefit.  It may seem like success for some but not able to put roots down, and living like a tight rope walker gives little peace.

When we hear the call of the cuckoo, the writer concludes, let  us ask  ourselves if we are using God as a means or as an end.When we are using another to satisfy our needs we are no different than the cuckoo bird. If we understand God to be our end than we need to act in this way when relating with others.

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