One Leg

The bird feeder outside my office window is a great distraction.

Before the dawn was full, I watched a single finch hop from peg to peg nibbling seed.

Something was odd.

As I focused my eyes, I could see, it was missing a leg. And I began to feel sorry for such a small creature.  I wondered what terrible fate had happened to take away its leg. Was it born this way? Did it happen recently? Was it a terrible accident or had disease ravaged and taken this creature’s boney little appendage?

As I started to play out all the stories in my mind, this bright little bird suddenly took flight. Perfect flight to the air and swirled around the yard and then headed towards the big oaks. And it hit me:

This creature wasn’t made to walk, it was made to fly. It had just enough legs—one—to land and perch and eat. In my eyes I saw disability—something had taken its leg. But for the bird, its true purpose was unchanged.

How often do we look at the simplest of disabilities and determine it a crutch—be it for another person or for ourselves?

A limp, a lisps, a mouth of crooked teeth.

A personality quirk, shyness, or a birthmark covering a face.

A body in proportions the world deems “abnormal”, a low IQ, or a really bad hair day.

These are small—insignificant—and shouldn’t be an excuse for taking flight. It should never be a reason we deem another incapable.

Even quadriplegics go on to create and participate in Rugby teams. They ski snowy slopes. The blind paint. The deaf write music. The mute speak to the world in media. And some of the most courageous poor find ways to help the poverty stricken.

Be it for you—or someone else—look beyond the “missing a leg” and see how much we can truly do.

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7 thoughts on “One Leg

  1. Thank you. I have sat here alone this week, throwing a proper pity party because of my disabilities. Sad to be all alone because no one invites me to go out for fun activities or even a walk because I am physically unable to join them. I have a bluejay in my yard similar to your bird. I have written about him, too. His leg is just mangled (kinda like me). I felt sorry for him, knowing how it feels. But… he still survives, he still visits my feeders, and he still sings his song. You reminded me that I need to learn from these little birds and sing my song to the world–no matter my disability.

  2. Sherry, I love that this little bird inspired you! Praise the Lord he gave you a pearl of wisdom in such an obscure way, and that you had the stillness and awareness to catch it. 🙂 Everyone of us has a purpose, regardless of the perceived disability. It reminds me of the song “Blessings” by Laura Story. What if our blessings came in rain drops?

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful post! 🙂

  3. A beautiful pic – if that is him – and a very inspiring story.

    Sometimes “disabilities” can become an excuse to cover up a different reason for not soaring – the real reason. (Perhaps a little introspection because it is not always a physical/visible ‘disability’.) I’ve seen help denied and choosing to cling to those excuses instead – what a pity. But for anyone who will spread their wings… the sky is the limit. (Even more so when you have God by your side.)

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