“God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart…” —Ecclesiastes 3:11 NLT
Have you ever used GPS? Many cars come equipped with it today, and you can get it on an iPhone or other mobile device. The problem is, sometimes GPS can lead you in the wrong direction!
I read about a motorist relying on GPS in Milwaukee who ended up on a snowmobile trail. Several miles down the frozen path, she stopped and couldn’t turn around. In about a foot and a half of snow, she had to call 9-1-1. The officer responding said, “People shouldn’t believe everything those things tell you.”
Take this sophisticated technology and compare it to birds. There are some amazing little birds God has created that have an internal homing instinct which is more sophisticated then the latest GPS technology.
Consider the Manx Shearwater. These amazing birds nest off of the coast of Wales. They are noted for their outstanding homing instinct. Scientists tagged and released a number of them at different points around the globe to see whether they could find their way back to the coast of Wales.
One bird was released in Boston, some 3,200 miles from home. In just over 12 days, that bird returned to his nest, having traveled 250 miles per day from a place it had never been before to reach its home again.
Then there is the Golden Plover. Native to Hawaii, the Plover migrates during the summer to the Aleutian Isles, 1,200 miles away. There they mate and lay their eggs, and their little fledglings are born. Then the Golden Plovers return to Hawaii, leaving their fledglings to grow up a little. What is amazing is that these little birds later make the 1,200-mile journey—to a place they have never been!
Try doing that with GPS!
That is an amazing homing instinct. So the next time someone calls you a “birdbrain,” you might take it as a compliment.
I think, in a sense, all of us have a homing instinct as humans. It is a homesickness for heaven. God has essentially wired us this way; the Bible says that God has “set eternity in our hearts” (see Ecclesiastes 3:11).
Just like those Manx Shearwaters and Golden Plovers, we have this built-in GPS. So follow that instinct!
Out of their long and painful journey has come a really helpful survival guide, so to speak. It’s a book called Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. It’s not just an inspiring story of triumph through trials but a how-to book for accepting God’s plan and recognizing His providence even when it feels like your world is shattered.