An Animal Parable

Ask the animals
and they will teach you
Job 12:7

Author Commentary

Then the Lord God said,
“It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.”
— Genesis 2:18 NLT

 

Noah & Waverly – A Scissortail Love Story

By Harrison Woodard

Noah was a very happy bird. He loved God and his parents very much. But there was just one thing missing from his life. He wanted a wife.

He asked his parents, “How do I find a wife?”

“Your mother and I were just thinking it was about time for you to start your own family,” said Noah’s dad.

“There are no single scissortails left in this area,” said his mother. “You should fly south to the next county. That’s where I grew up. There will be plenty of scissortails down there.

His father agreed, “Don’t just pick the first one you meet. Make sure she loves God like you do.”

“How will I know which one is right?” asked Noah.

“Trust God. He will guide you,” said his father.

“You’ll make a wonderful husband and father,” added his mother wrapping her wing around Noah.

“Wait until next morning and fly south. God will tell you what to do,” said his father.

The next morning the three gathered to pray. They thanked God for giving Noah the perfect wife and His protection. After the three hugged each other and said goodbye, Noah was on his way south.

He flew all morning over farms and fields. He had never flown this far from home, so this was an exciting trip.

After a few hours, he came to a small town. Noah had never been to the city so he wanted to look around. He landed on the roof of a small shop. Soon, he was joined by a group of pigeons.

“Hello friend,” said one of the pigeons. “I’ve never seen you before?”

“I’m from up north,” said Noah.

“You’ve never been to the city have you?” asked another pigeon.

“This is my first time,” said Noah. “Hey, do you know if any scissortails live around here?”

“I think there are a few just outside of town,” said one.

“Follow this road until you start seeing some farms,” added another.

“Thanks for your help,” said Noah as he flew away.

After a few minutes, he was out of the city and surrounded by farmland. He saw a small group of female scissortails perched on a power line.

“Good morning ladies,” said Noah. “Watch this!”

Noah flew high up in the air and then dove. He turned back up and then did some tight turns. For several minutes, he performed every flying trick he knew. He turned to see what the ladies thought of his sky dance, but they had all flown away.

“Hmmm,” said Noah, a little disappointed that nobody stayed to watch.

He landed on the power line. Soon, a crow joined him.

“That was some mighty impressive flying,” said the crow.

“Thanks,” said Noah.

“Showing off for the ladies?” asked the crow.

“None of them even saw it,” said Noah.

“Women can sometimes be a challenge,” said the crow. “But maybe next time you might try talking to them first. Show them some attention. I bet you’ll do better next time.”

“Thanks,” said Noah.

“Where are you from?” asked the crow.

“I grew up in Johnson County, just a few miles north of here,” said Noah. “My parents told me to go back to Smith County where my mother grew up to find a wife.”

“Well, that may be part of the problem,” said the crow. “You’re still in Johnson County. The county line is just beyond the next town.”

“Well I better get going before it gets too dark,” said Noah. “Thanks for your help.”

“Fly safe,” said the crow.

Noah flew south until he reached the county line. The sun was setting so he found a large tree and spent the night.

The next morning he heard the familiar chatter of scissortails all around. He flew all over the area and tried to talk to the ladies, but they were either already married or just not interested. As soon as he would start to introduce himself, they would just fly away.

That evening he prayed about his situation.

“God, my parents said that you would help me find a wife,” prayed Noah. “What should I do?”

“I’ve been waiting for you to ask me for help. Don’t you know I want the very best for you?” asked God.

“I’m sorry. I know that you love me,” said Noah. “What should I do?”

“Just trust me. Focus on showing others My love and I’ll make sure that all your needs are met,” said God.

Noah thought about it for a few minutes. It made sense to him that God wanted the best for him. Now, he just had to find someone that he could show God’s love.

The sun was setting, so Noah decided to spend the night there. In the morning, he would fly further south.

The next morning, Noah flew over another small town. Just south of the city were more farms. He sat down on a fence post to rest. He looked around at the corn growing in the sun.

“This looks like some good hunting ground.”

He flew up to a power line for a better view of the field. From his perch he watched a young scissortail dart between the corn stalks.

“Darn it!” yelled the young bird as he missed another grasshopper.

Noah kept watching as the young bird missed insect after insect.

“Is everything okay?” shouted Noah. “Do you need some help?”

The young bird flew up and joined Noah on the power line.

“My name is Noah.”

“I’m Keenan,” said the young bird.

“Are you having trouble catching dinner?” asked Noah.

“I’ve got a nest full of hungry chicks. If I don’t catch something fast, I’ll be in a heap of trouble,” said Keenan. “My wife said I better bring back a grasshopper, or don’t bother coming back.”

“Haven’t you ever caught grasshoppers before?” asked Noah.

“I can catch just about any insect, but for some reason grasshoppers always get away,” said Keenan.

“Didn’t your father ever teach you how to catch them?” asked Noah.

“No. He left while I was very young and I just never learned,” said Keenan.

“Wait right here,” said Noah as he glanced around the field. “I’ll be right back.”

Noah dived down and in seconds snagged the biggest, juiciest grasshopper Keenan had ever seen. Within seconds, he was back on the power line.

“How’d you do that?” asked Keenan.

“Don’t worry about that now,” said Noah handing the grasshopper to Keenan. “Take this back to your nest. I’ll meet you here tomorrow morning and show you.”

Early the next morning, Noah met Keenan back on the power line above the cornfield. Several other scissortails gathered near the field to watch.

“Do you know those other birds?” asked Noah.

“They’re just some of the locals,” said Keenan. “They’ll probably just laugh at me for having to be taught how to feed my family.”

“Don’t worry about what they think. In a few hours, you’ll be the best grasshopper hunter in the county,” said Noah.

For several hours, Noah and Keenan practiced dives and acrobatics above the cornfield. In a short time Keenan had mastered the basics and was learning about grasshopper behavior.

“Keenan, this is the most important lesson my father taught me,” said Noah. “Grasshoppers are smart. They know most birds hunt in the morning and evening. So they hide during those times. The best time to hunt them is in the afternoon when it is really hot.”

“Why is that?” asked Keenan.

“First of all, they don’t expect any birds to be around. But mostly, they just like to show off to each other in the heat of the day,” said Noah. “Now watch the field below.”

The two birds looked down at the field. Before long they started seeing grasshoppers hop and fly among the corn.

“Grasshoppers can fly short distances, but they get tired very quickly. The larger and older ones like to prove they are the best by flying the highest,” said Noah.

Noah saw a grasshopper leap up in the air.

“There’s one,” said Noah. “And there’s another one. The next one will be the one you want.”

Just then a giant grasshopper leaped up in the air much higher than the first two. Just as it peaked, Noah swooped down and scooped it up.

Noah handed the grasshopper to Keenan.

“Did you see that?” asked Noah. “When you wait on a much larger one to take off and fly higher than the rest, you’ll have time to dive down and grab him before he knows what is happening. Now take the grasshopper back to your family and come back and you can try it.”

Keenan flew back to the nest and within minutes was back with Noah.

“Are you ready?” asked Noah.

“I sure am,” said an excited Keenan.

Keenan sat on the power line and searched the field. Suddenly, a grasshopper jumped up in the air. And then another two followed him.

“Wait a second,” said Noah. “There is going to be one more this time.”

Sure enough an even larger one leaped up in the air.

“Go get it!” shouted Noah.

“Charge!” yelled Keenan as he dived down and easily grabbed the grasshopper.

Keenan flew back to his nest and dropped off the grasshopper. In a few minutes he was back sitting on the power line with Noah.

“I think you got the hang of it,” said Noah.

“Thanks to you my family will never be hungry,” said Keenan.

“Make sure you show your chicks how to do it when they are old enough,” said Noah.

“I sure will,” answered Keenan waving goodbye.

Noah looked around to see if any other birds were still watching, but they had all left. He was alone. He closed his eyes and listened for God’s voice.

“Noah,” said God. “Thanks for helping Keenan.”

“You’re welcome,” said Noah. “I was glad to help.”

Noah was so busy praising God he hadn’t even noticed that another bird had joined him on the wire.

“That sure was a nice thing you did for Keenan,” said the bird.

“You saw that?” asked a startled Noah.

“I was across the field watching from those trees over there,” said the bird. “My name is Waverly.”

“I’m Noah.”

“You know what God told me this morning?” asked Waverly.

“What did He say?” asked Noah.

“He told me to come to this field this morning and I would see love in action,” said Waverly.

“I was just helping out,” said Noah a little embarrassed.

“You know that wasn’t all He said,” said Waverly.

“What else?” asked Noah.

“He also said that I would meet someone very special today,” said Waverly.

Noah looked at Waverly. She was so beautiful. Instantly, he knew that God had brought them together. They snuggled closer together and quietly watched the prettiest sunset that either of them had ever seen.

From that day forward, they were never apart. And they never stopped thanking God for bringing them together.

 

THE END

 

Want to learn more? — Scissortail flycatchers have long tails that resemble a pair of scissors. They live in the lower great plains states during the summer months and migrate south during the winter. Their courtship involves a very beautiful sky dance. Scissortails are the official bird of Oklahoma. To learn more, click here: Scissortail Flycatchers.

 

 

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