It was another one of those “perfect” mornings that we take pleasure in on a consistent basis in Arizona. I was enjoying my coffee in our screened porch, watching and listening to the water dropping into the pond from our little “waterfall”, and appreciating the variety of birds feeding next to the mandarin orange tree.
The bird feeder is such that the larger birds cannot get into it to eat. That does not deter them from arriving in grandiose fashion. The finches arrive, in their array of colors, and clinging to the side of the feeder, they are able to gather as much food as they desire. In the process of their flitter and flutter, they knock out sufficient food for the larger birds to enjoy on the ground. This morning would be no exception. The larger birds were getting the leftovers… reveling in them.
This process had been continuing for quite some time when the following thought traversed my brain. This was like the story in Matthew 15 where a Syrophoenician woman came to Jesus to have her daughter healed. Her daughter was “cruelly demon-possessed”. I might inject that the majority of us would not recognize demon possession today if it were on our doorstep. We would find some medical diagnosis for its description.
The woman made no pretense about her problem. She called it as she saw it, even though it was her daughter. She obviously had more insight into Jesus than even the disciples of Jesus. They would send her away; she would appeal to Him until her daughter was healed. The social problem, she being a Syrophoenician, created a negative environment and every effort was applied to remove her from contact with the Savior. Jesus, Himself, used her to promote a marvelous truth concerning His ministry to mankind. He told her of His intention: “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” It is then that we hear that phrase to which I mentioned earlier: “Yes, Lord; but even the dogs feed on the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.”
When one admits their situation to Jesus and falls humbly in adoration, we can expect to hear marvelous truths from His heart to ours. “O woman, your faith is great; it shall be done for you as you wish.” At that moment, her daughter was healed. Read from the Book of John, chapter 1, verses 11-13: “He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him (Jews). But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”
The birds taught us a Biblical principle, did they not? As a non-Jew, I am invited to take of the “crumbs”. Those crumbs were extended to both Jew and Gentile, as we read in John 1. Their rejection of Jesus opened a door of reception for us.
Call it crumbs if you want, but it has become a “feast” to those of us who have believed on Jesus as our Savior and the substitute for our sin.