I really, really like animals…until they get in my way.
There is a community of wild geese that have been hanging out in our church parking lot lately. Sometimes they are quiet and calm and congregate in one small section of snowy ground (like a morning Bible study). And sometimes they are loudly honking, spread out all over the parking lot, and eating and leaving geese gifts for us to step in (like a Chiefs Super Bowl champs party?).
Geese are beautiful to look at, but these geese are intruding, right!? They are loitering where cars should go, and it’s kind of dangerous. But I suppose they like church like I do and they just can’t stay away. Plus, maybe we humans are intruding on their turf.
The Pulitzer prize-winning poet Mary Oliver passed away today. Her writing made poetry accessible to all people, taking away the frilly detail and fancy words that riddle grand poetry from the past.
Her poems walk right up to you in the parking lot, speak a few words of beautiful honks of truth, and force you to look up and around at God’s creative Nature.
So I guess my selfish day needs to be invaded with geese sometimes. It forces me to slow down, look up, and get out of my own head for just a bit. That’s where God is. I hope you’ll see it, too, in one of her beloved poems about geese (yep, God has a sense of humor):