“but the greatest of these is love.” (1 Cor. 13:13 NKJV)
A few weeks ago I was taking a quiet walk enjoying the cool breezes of a Summer evening. I came to the solitary Maple tree in my backyard and there I saw it, a baby bird laying in the grass. I knew that the Robin that had raised a family of birds earlier this Spring on my Dad’s porch across the road had started a second nest in this Maple tree. Looking up I saw the nest high in the branches. The baby bird had taken quite a fall and I was sure it was dead. I reached down to pick it up when suddenly it moved. Its bald head with still closed eyes was stretching from side to side looking for its Mother.
Amazed at this miracle, I pondered what to do. I knew that my Dad had a ladder at his house so I ran over to get it. Hurrying back I checked on the baby robin. It was still alive. I placed the ladder against the tree and tried to get it near the branch with the nest. It was then that I heard the Maple leaves “meow”. Gazing through them I saw the culprit, a neighborhood Tomcat.
Looking for a quick meal he must have shaken the bird out of the nest and gotten himself trapped up in the tree as well. Climbing up through the branches I grabbed him by the scruff of his neck, gave him a scolding “Hiss!”, and dropped him softly to the ground. He ran off as fast as he could. I climbed back down, took a paper towel out of my pocket and gently picked up the baby bird. Then slowly I climbed up the ladder and stretching my arm out as far as I could placed it in the nest. I said a little prayer for the baby bird and then took the ladder back to my Dad’s house.
In the weeks that have followed I have looked up at the nest several times but have only been able to see the mother bird. I may never know if I saved the baby or not, but trying was enough. Sometimes we don’t get to know if our efforts have made a difference or not. Sometimes we have to just trust God and do what good we can. Sometimes love has to be its own reward.
Joseph J. Mazzella