Geese

natureI first published this story several years ago. It seemed fitting to share it again today.

As seasons change and the weather cools down, we see geese flying south for the winter. We hear their honking and see that familiar V formation in the sky.

I’m sure that most of us have heard the reasoning for this formation. Scientists have discovered that as each bird flaps its wings, it creates uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in V formation, the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone. If a goose falls out of formation, it feels the drag and resistance of flying alone and quickly rejoins the formation.

Did you know that the reason the geese honk from behind is to encourage the others to keep up their speed? Also, when the lead goose gets tired, it rotates back and another takes its place as lead.

There are so many lessons for us here. First, people sharing a common direction can get where they’re going quicker and easier by traveling together. We should keep company with those heading in the same direction as us. Second, it makes sense to take turns doing the hard jobs and to remember to encourage those taking the lead.

Another thing about geese is when one gets sick or injured and falls out of formation, two others follow it down for protection and help. They stay together until it is either able to fly, or dead, and then they launch out again. They either fly on their own or join with another formation until they catch up to their group.

The final lesson here is to stand by each other. We should protect and care for each other. It is also good to make new friends who seem to be going in our direction.

If we follow the same guidelines as these geese, how much better would our lives be?

Chords of Love

Last week I had the privilege of being the speaker for an event in a small seaport town in Mexico. Women (and a few men) from three countries came together for the evening. The majority spoke Spanish and my message would not have been understood if not for the amazing translator I worked with. The goal was to share how we all have a role to play and can come together despite our different languages and cultural backgrounds. As one of the volunteers involved in bringing this evening to fruition, I experienced the teamwork necessary as a perfect example of this. Our theme was inspired by the song Bind Us Together and the evening ended with it being sung in both languages simultaneously. For this reason, it seemed fitting to include an illustration pertaining to music near the close of my talk. Years ago, I was a member of a four-part harmony acapella chorus, so I drew on that experience. The melody line was complimented by tenor, baritone and bass. While the melody could have stood on its own, it became much richer when combined with the other notes. Conversely, some of the other parts sounded discordant when heard on their own. Their notes were meant to enrich others by blending together. The resulting harmony was far more pleasing than any one voice could produce. The point is, when we come together to help each other, each of us sings a more beautiful song. In these days of uncertainty, some are singing notes of fear. If I come alongside with my notes of understanding, encouragement and support the tune can change from despair to hope. Instead of wondering if your notes can enhance mine, I need to be looking for ways I can enrich yours. It’s amazing what can happen when we are bound together with these chords (cords) of love.

Preparing to Fly

#God, #inspiration, encouragement, practice
picture from images.search.yahoo.com

Do you hear that sound? The Canadian Geese are doing practice runs and we seem to be in their flight path. Maybe you are, too.

They spend weeks practicing before they actually attempt their long distance flight. On occasion, we have witnessed a gaggle of geese on a nearby pond start to honk as two or three were landing. It was like they were cheering the others on.

Did you know that the reason geese honk from behind is to encourage the ones in front of them? Also, when the lead goose gets tired, it rotates back and another takes its place as the lead.

I could learn from their teamwork. It makes sense to take turns doing the hard jobs and to encourage those who are taking the lead.

The V formation geese fly in allows the whole flock to have a much longer flying range than if one bird flew alone.

Again, this can apply to us. When we share a common direction, we can get there faster and easier if we travel with others. Not only can we learn from those we travel with, I find it more pleasant than travelling alone.

A flock of geese is like a family. They look out for each other. As part of the family of God, I am instructed to do the same. What a wonderful world it would be if we took our cue from the geese and everyone worked together and encouraged each other.

“Be devoted to each other like a loving family. Excel in showing respect for each other.” (Romans 12:10 GWT)

Help carry each other’s burdens. In this way you will follow Christ’s teachings.” (Galatians 6:2 GWT)