Bald Eagle Sighting
Two years ago, Josh and I embarked on our first adventure together. After hearing me talk about my love for photography he mentioned there were bald eagles only 1.5 miles from his house. Not knowing him well enough yet, I was a bit worried why he wanted to take me into the woods. But I figured this tough country girl could handle herself. We went on a short ride along the river to what appeared to be an eagle habitat, with a gigantic nest that a human could fit in. But no eagles were in sight. Matter of fact, I didn’t have my first eagle sighting until March of this year, and it couldn’t have been a more perfect moment.
My family has a thing with birds…owls to be exact. The night of August 12, 2010 my parents and I sat together in prayer. My mom had been diagnosed with breast cancer that summer and her surgery was scheduled for the next day. As we prayed that God would keep her safe and give her strength to win the battle, we also struggled to understand why God would put her through this situation. Shortly after reading our favorite bible verse (Psalm 121) together, we heard the hooting of an owl. Standing on the sidewalk and peeping into the window was a HUGE owl. He stood there and eagerly watched us. I had never seen an owl that close before!
Over the next 6 years our family experienced major trials together that most people never encounter in their lifetime. When we hit a low and needed a reminder that God was watching over us, that he has a plan for everything and it will all work out for the best, an owl would make an appearance. This happened when: mom won her battle with cancer, my engagement was broken (thank goodness!) a few months before the planned wedding, I was driving home from meeting Josh the first time, and when Josh came home from an accident that doctor’s didn’t expect him to survive. A lot for just 6 years. Our lives were so crazy that last year an owl moved his home close to ours, and he could constantly be seen sitting at the end of our driveway at night.
Most recently though, on that day in March when I really needed to see an owl, I saw a bald eagle instead. This was my first eagle sighting! I had been recuperating from medical tests earlier that day to determine if health issues I’d had lately were due to cancer. As my parents pulled into our driveway to bring by a celebratory supper (that’s right, no cancer), a bald eagle was perched in a tree near the end of our driveway. Yes, our life got so chaotic that we upgraded from an owl to a bald eagle! I giggled at God’s gracious sense of humor as ventured outside and took this video that day.
Two weeks ago Josh and I went for a walk and stopped by the eagle’s nest, the one we visited when embarking on that first adventure. To our surprise someone was home! Sitting there on a tree limb was a gigantic, beautifully created bald eagle. Most people would get excited about such a sighting because they are a rare, endangered species. But it meant so much more to me. The previous day I had a major heart-to-heart with God. I was struggling with the right words of encouragement and comfort to help my husband with something he was dealing with. I even wrote this scripture in my prayer journal “But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded.” (2 Chronicles 15:7) I wanted to remind myself to never give up on my role as a helper, wife, worker, and just overall christian. So when I saw the eagle I knew God was telling me everything was going to be great, that he was going to guide me and build me to be a strong helper for my husband. And the photographer in me was going so crazy that how could it not be an awesome moment?! Josh and I sat there next to the river and watched the eagle until we decided it was time to let him be. Feel free to click on the images below to make them bigger.