No. 356

If you are a regular reader of this column you already know, but if not, I want to tell you that my purpose for each one is to give you a thought, an idea, a story or a concept that will benefit you in some way. Some of my columns are to inform, others to inspire, while still others to educate or to entertain, but all with you, the reader, in mind. You are a very important person to me, as well as to others, and I will always do my best to never forget that. As you know, life is full of problems or opportunities, depending on how we view them and how we deal with each challenge will determine our success or failure as a human being.
The main thing that sets us apart from all the other creatures that God has created is something we call the brain. To be sure, the ability to think, to reason, to make decisions and to plan, gives us a leg up on anything else that walks around on this planet. Unfortunately, most of us never use this God-given gift to anywhere near its maximum capacity.
This true story about another of God’s creatures will give you a mental picture of what I am saying. Please allow me to begin with this statement. If anyone ever calls you a “bird brain” you can tell him or her that I said it isn’t so. The reason I can make this statement with complete confidence is because no human being could be as stupid as a frustrated bird that came to our house a few weeks ago. You may recall from a previous column that my wife and I were able to glass in our front porch to create a sunroom. To get this area presentable and make it comfortable to spend time in, my wife went to a local craft store and bought one of those artificial green trees like those you see in the lobby of large buildings. Because she likes birds, especially red birds, and since our home is in a natural setting, she also bought several of those little stuffed red birds to place around in the tree limbs.
So far so good, and I must say that it adds that little special touch that my wife is so good at. To make a long story short, we were not the only ones who thought the red birds were pretty. A beautiful green bird, that we later learned were the mate of a scarlet tanager, was also attracted to the red birds. It started slowly at first, but the intensity increased with the passing of time, as this female tanager repeatedly flew into the glass window, trying to get inside to the red birds. After many vain attempts, and not being able to get inside, she would sit on the windowsill just looking up at the lifeless birds inside. This went on for days, several hours at a time, until we finally felt guilty for this poor bird and took the red birds out of the tree to give her some relief. This reminds me of the late Jerry Clower.
The point of this true story is that this female tanager with her “bird brain” never figured out that the red birds in the tree were not real. Now, to the obvious contrast between the power of a bird brain and that of a human brain. The human brain that we usually refer to as the mind is without question the single greatest agency to ever appear on planet earth. From this small mass of gray matter that each of us carries around between our ears, has hatched the idea for every man made thing we see about us in the world today.
Every invention, every product, all modern conveniences, the massive production and distribution of our food supply and on and on, came as a result of the by-product of the human mind. We call this by-product thinking, which unfortunately the female scarlet tanager was not able to do. The power of the human mind is not necessarily connected with the fitness of the human body as many of the greatest thinkers of all time have had frail or handicapped bodies. For you and me it really comes down to this simple question: “What are we doing with the marvelous human mind that God has given to each of us?” (Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034.)