"Nobody seemed interested in buying the birds until a devout Brahman came along. He believed in the Hindu idea of respect for all life, so his heart of compassion went out to those poor little creatures walking in their monotonous circles.
"'I want to buy them all,' he told the merchant, who was elated. After receiving the money, he was surprised to hear the buyer say, 'Now, I want you to set them all free.'
"'What's that, sir?'
"'You heard me. Cut the strings from their legs and turn them loose. Set them all free!'
"With a shrug, the old farmer bent down and snipped the strings off the quail. They were freed at last. What happened? The birds simply continued marching around and around in a circle. Finally, the man had to shoo them off. But even when they landed some distance away, they resumed their predictable march. Free, unfettered, released...yet they kept going around in circles as if still tied."
Do you ever feel like those quail marching around in circles? Free but trapped by habit. Released but in bondage to the old patterns of life. Stuck in a rut even though you are not in a ditch.
But why do we get stuck or trapped? We do not have a new vision of ourselves.
Recently, I have taught some budgeting classes and have done some budget counseling. Many of these people have very little income. I stunned them. I challenged them to set a goal of building up an emergency fund savings account of $1000. Many were amazed, "That's impossible." But for some the light switched on. They saw a new possibility. They had a new vision.
As a follower of Jesus Christ, he is the one who sets a new vision for me. Because of his vision for me, he is transforming me from a circling quail to brand new person with a new vision and direction. The more and more God strips me of my quail feathers, the more life has become an adventure. I am going to new places instead of old circles. So, I invite you to look to God and stare at Jesus and let the Holy Spirit reveal to you your new vision of who you are.
In the words of Chuck Swindoll one more time, "Until you give yourself permission to be the unique person God made you to be...and to do the unpredictable things grace allows you to do...you will be like that covey of quail, marching around in vicious circles of fear, timidity and boredom."
Peace be with you!
Chuck Swindolls words care from Dallas Seminary Daily Devotional, 2-7-05