Summary: Based on the old parable "A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush" teaches thankfullness for all God has done for us.
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. for the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush
This next week we celebrate the holiday of Thanksgiving, and it makes me beg the question… what is Thanksgiving? Thinking back to my childhood… I remember waking up Thanksgiving Day and turning on the TV to watch the Thanksgiving Day parade, I remember my mother making tons of food, I remember my father… watching football. I remember looking at the Thanksgiving fliers… and thinking about the mad shopping frenzy that would take place the next morning as people would stand out in the cold for a $100 big screen TV… or whatever else big draw was urging them to be outside in the cold… at 5 in the morning.
So I ask… what is Thanksgiving? Family? Football? Frenzy? Yes… yes… and yes. But it is more than that too… it is more than just another family holiday… it is more than a kickoff for Christmas… it is more than football on a Thursday. It is a holiday when we stop to give thanks for all that we have, stop to give thanks for all that we’ve been given, stop to give thanks to God.
Brothers and sisters, we have so much… God has given us so much, and yet we rarely take the time to truly show our thanks. Think back this last year… think of the really good times… think of the really, really bad times… God was there for you during both those times. God was there to give us hope, to give us strength, to give us peace and assurance at every single step this past year. But have we really thanked him for it?
Chances are… we have not. Far too often we take for granted all that we have and all that God’s done for us. Many times… we are far too busy thinking about all the things we don’t have… thinking about all the things God hasn’t done for us… and we miss out on appreciating all the things we do have. We dream of a better life, a better house, a better car, a better job… and in our dreams… we get lost… to the reality that lies before us. And in the end… we really miss out because our lives have been wasted wanting… and dreaming… instead of appreciating… and when we do that, we really end up losing what we had in the first place.
It is like the old parable… Back many years ago, when life was a little simpler, albeit a little harder, there was a man who didn’t even have two nickels to rub together. He was journeying towards the nearest town to try to find some food just to survive. As he walked the dusty trail to town, head low, feet aching… he was suddenly startled by a great ruckus coming from the ground near his feet
Here… a beautiful songbird had become entangled in the brush. With very little trouble at all, the man stooped down… grabbed the bird, and freed it from its entanglement. He had captured… a wild bird. It was a magnificent bird… surely worth several dollars in the town up ahead. Well, the man stood up and began skipping towards town with great joy.
Oh what luck! Oh what great fortune! Surely, this meant his luck had changed for the better. As he continued his journey to town… skipping, and singing… the man came across a bush. In this bush, lived two more songbirds. Oh what a very fortunate day, he thought… instead of having just one bird… I will be able to take three birds to town and have myself a small fortune!
The man darted towards the bush, and the songbirds began to take flight. He made several desperate grabs for the songbirds making their escape… but only caught air. Much worse… in his feeble attempt to capture these two birds in the bush… he had lost the bird in his hand. This poor man, who began our story with nothing at all… now found himself… with nothing at all… again. It is then that he learned the valuable lesson of this parable, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush!” A more straightforward way of looking at it would be, “Be grateful for what you have, for the things we already have are greater than the things we only hope to get!”