Friday, November 29, 2013
Mentoring is for the Birds!
Birds don't wear goggles or bifocals when they go fishing. Did you ever wonder how a bird in the sky can spot a fish under water? I've never seen a bird with binoculars! Humans and birds see differently for many reasons. What gives birds the ability to see beyond the surface of the water when they are looking for a meal?
Birds have the ability to see in two types of vision called binocular and monocular vision. This means that both eyes can work together to see straight ahead or each eye can see independently of the other. A bird's eye takes up a larger percentage of space on its head than a human eye does. The retina contains different colored drops of oil. Each species has oil that allows it to see effectively for its own individual lifestyle. A sea bird will have more drops of oil which is believed to help it block the glare of the water when searching for food.
Several years ago I was helping to teach a youth group at a local church. One particularly exasperating young man gave us a years worth of stress in about 2 hours. I remarked to one of the other youth leaders that this boy was a lost cause. I said: "Some kids are just never going to get it!" The other leader nodded his head in agreement. We had both just written him off our "beyonder list." We could not see beyond his immaturity - that was very immature of us!
I went home that night thinking that I had a good day as I lay down in bed. All of a sudden a guilt bird started flying around my gut. The voice I heard was almost audible: "Who do you think you are saying that boy will never get it? You got it didn't you?" I began to remember how far I had come in my own life journey. I had given many folks a whole lot of stress while growing beyond my immaturity. I felt guilty and I learned my lesson not to write any child off of my "beyonder list."
Birds can see in cloudy, foggy and murky conditions in large part due to the oil in their retinas. The oil of compassion in a Mentors heart will allow them to see through cloudy immaturity in people. Becoming a Beyonder requires the binocular vision of seeing what's right in front of you and the monocular vision that sees the wider vision of the big picture of possibility.
How's your eyesight? Do you have the ability to see beyond your current situation? My Grandmother always said: "There are better days ahead." My Mom always said: "This too shall pass." They were both Beyonders who believed in brighter days