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The Harrowing Hummingbird Happening!

Updated: Mar 18, 2022

Written by: Christopher Sernaque

Dear Reader,

An avid cyclist, I found myself at my destination faster than I expected. There is a Target not too far from my home, and beautiful weather and a clear path, made the journey seem faster. There is a set of stop signs that slow the cars exiting Target and it was there that I saw him.

He had collapsed. It was obvious that he was dazed. He wasn’t moving. Neither was I. I knelt beside him. The kickstand kept my bike up, and I raised my voice. I called out to an approaching family. There was a dazed hummingbird, lying on the sidewalk, in between the two stop signs. I had left my phone at home because it needed to charge, and I asked an approaching family on their bikes if they could call a Wildlife Institute for me. The family apologized, as they had left all their phones at home, so they could spend time outside without distraction.

Grapping my bike I sprinted, locked it onto the rack, and raced to the front desk at Target. I asked if I could use their phone to call the Wildlife center. The individual at the front desk told me that she could not allow me to do that, and that the Wildlife centers were probably closed anyway. She apologized. I exited the store and turned to my right and asked another couple if they could help me. Though they declined, the couple that took a left at the automatic doors was soon at my side. They were wildlife enthusiasts named Jared and Jade, who were members of a Bird Wildlife Community, called “Florida Birds.” Jared said that he had overheard my plight and that he and Jade were willing to help in any way they could. Jared said, “I want to see it”, when I hurriedly explained the hummingbird’s plight.

At this point, the hummingbird had moved to one of the columns on the Target building. He desperately tried to take flight. Hovering low to the ground, he eventually collapsed again in one of the medians. Jared, Jade and I raced up to him. Jade identified him as a Ruby-Throated Hummingbird. Once again, the hummingbird attempted to take flight.

He was dodging cars as he started to plummet to the ground. A car was approaching. So, was a woman with a shopping cart. Jared leapt into action. He put his own shopping cart before him, gained momentum as he ran, and jumped out in front of the hummingbird, shielding him. The car turned into another parking lot lane, and the woman with the cart commented on the beauty of the hummingbird. Jade gently took the Ruby Throat into her hands to get him out of the street. She had snapped a picture of him and posted it to the Florida Birds FB group to see what other members suggested being done to help the hummingbird. Someone recommended that the bird be brought to a wildlife clinic, that treats birds. Jared opened one of the Cherry sparkling water boxes and emptied the cans into another Target bag. We used my Smile-Crafters drawstring backpack as a soft nest for the hummingbird to rest in. Jade had been calling wildlife clinics to see if one was open. Her Uncle operates one, although he does not treat birds. Once she contacted one that was open, she and Jared drove to the Veterinary Emergency Center with the hummingbird.

Prior to them leaving, we exchanged numbers. I was so grateful that they had been willing to help. They shared that it is their love for God that drives their passion for science and nature. I asked if there was anything I could do to be of service to them and Jared said, “You should be in a movie. You have that classical American hero look.” I told him I appreciated his kind words and waved as they sped off. I returned home on my bike.

What’s the moral of this story? There are two actually. First and foremost, just as God loves the birds of the air, He deeply loves and values you.

“Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:6-7) “Therefore, I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26)

Secondly, just as Jared and Jade intervened to save the life of this dear hummingbird, Jesus Christ has intervened on humanities’ behalf to save us from our sins. (Matthew 1:21) Jesus loves every child of humanity and the birds of the air. The Desire of Ages contains this beautiful comment about Christ’s sovereign power to uphold the universe, and His gentle sensitivity in being willing to help, even injured birds. “Jesus was the fountain of healing mercy for the world; and through all those secluded years at Nazareth, His life flowed out in currents of sympathy and tenderness. The aged, the sorrowing, and the sin-burdened, the children at play in their innocent joy, the little creatures of the groves, the patient beasts of burden, —all were happier for His presence. He whose word of power upheld the worlds would stoop to relieve a wounded bird. There was nothing beneath His notice, nothing to which He disdained to minister. {DA 74.1}

Thus, as He grew in wisdom and stature, Jesus increased in favor with God and man. He drew the sympathy of all hearts by showing Himself capable of sympathizing with all. The atmosphere of hope and courage that surrounded Him made Him a blessing in every home. And often in the synagogue on the Sabbath day He was called upon to read the lesson from the prophets, and the hearts of the hearers thrilled as a new light shone out from the familiar words of the sacred text. {DA 74.2}

Jared and Jade texted me later that evening. They had made it to the vet. Our little ruby throat was in care and the veterinarian said he is going to make it! Thank God the little guy will take to the skies once more!

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