Derek had a fairly unusual experience. You see, a bird landed on his head in his rather thick, wavy black hair. Rather than wave it away, he simply ignored the little brown sparrow. It hunkered down into his rather thick, wavy black hair and peeked out from time to time. Arriving home, Derek’s wife Debbie noticed the bird immediately.
“Get that thing out of your hair!”
Derek walked passed her and into the living room to watch TV. From time to time the bird flew away, out the open window, then back again with a blade of grass or piece of straw.
“Derek, it’s making a nest! Get rid of that horrid thing!”
Derek only glanced at Debbie vacantly, then looked back to the TV. Debbie shut the window once when the bird flew out the window, but when it flew back and looked forelornly through the glass, Derek went outside and sat on the porch. The bird continued it’s project.
By bedtime, the nest was complete and the bird was settling down for the night.
“You will not sleep in the same bed…or even the same room with me if you have that dirty animal in your hair!”
Derek bedded down on the couch that night.
At work the next day, Derek’s co-workers joked and laughed until the boss noted. His face void of expression as his boss demanded an explanation, he was sent home from work that day. The boss said he didn’t need to come back any more if he was going to have the animal in his hair.
That evening a family friend came by to chat with Derek about the bird, but Derek said only, “It’s not a problem,” and kept silent for the rest of the visit. His mother came the next day and begged him to get rid of the bird, but he simply ignored her. The local vet came by the next day, offering to help him remove the bird with its nest and take care of the bird humanely. Derek had nothing meaningful to contribute to the conversation, and the vet went home empty handed.
Tearfully, Debbie put Derek out of the house. “Come back when you’re clean again.”
The bird had laid eggs, and white bird “doo” was dripping down around his ears and drying unattended. No restaurant would let him inside (it certainly was not hygenic). His money ran out pretty quickly anyway, and he kept himself going on what he found in dumpsters.
By the end of summer, the hatchlings had grown sufficiently to begin flying. The first hard freeze of autumn found Derek shivering in a dry ditch, covered with strips of cardboard for a makeshift blanket. The nest was empty.
Does this sound absurd, unlikely and dubious. Maybe, but the truth is that you could be doing the same thing that Derek did.
“…and do not give the devil a foothold” (Ephesians 4:27 NIV).
You can’t keep temptation from coming, but like the bird in Derek’s hair, you don’t have to let it make a nest. And, if it is already nestled in and cozy, you can still remove it. Maybe that seems impossible, but Christ can truly help you to get rid of the sin and clean up.
It could be that you are comfortable physically, but spiritually you are out of control. You have to get rid of it, for your own good.
“If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life maimed than to have two hands and to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire. And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life lame than to have two feet and to be thrown into hell. And if your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out; it is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and to be thrown into hell [Gehenna], where their worm never dies, and the fire is never quenched.” (Mark 9:43-48 NRSV).