It was the cold of winter when the small, persistent bird appeared outside my window, singing its song into the sub-zero ice and snow. I called him crazy bird. He must be crazy, was my immediate reaction. Only a crazy bird would be out there singing his heart out under those conditions. “For God’s sake, little bird,” I muttered to myself that winter day, “don’t you know any better?”
That was the line that did me in, of course, My own line. “For God’s sake….”
I knew as soon as the words were out of my mouth that the crazy bird had a big message for me—and for all of us who keep singing our songs of hope and faith and love into the cold nightmare of a world we live in. For God’s sake. That’s why we sing. Again. And again. And again. Just in case someone did not hear the song the first time, or the second or the one hundredth.
After all there is that wisdom about the hundredth monkey.
Long ago, the story goes, monkeys who lived on a remote island dug sweet potatoes out of the ground and ate them. As is. Dirt and all. No one is sure exactly why or when the first monkey washed his sweet potato before he ate it. But gradually, ever so gradually all of the monkeys on this island began to wash their sweet potatoes before they ate them, as well. Then one day, the ‘hundreth monkey” washed his sweet potato, and the phenomena jumped the waters, and suddenly, monkeys all over the world were washing their sweet potatoes before they ate them. This story of the hundredth monkey tells of a “tipping point,” when after countless repetitions of an idea or a behavior, what had seemed a local, isolated effort becomes a norm.
How many songs of hope and peace and love must be sung to reach that tipping point?
I don’t know for sure, but the thing I knew without a doubt on that cold Kentucky day was that the crazy bird was outside my window with an important message for my new life, which was still months away.
And now, the day and time have come.
The song I have been called to sing is one of transformation. Of entering into holy conversation with as many different people as it is possible to meet and know in order to hear their stories, and begin to model ways in which we can turn to each other rather than against each other; ways in which we can truly respect the worth and dignity of each person; ways in which we can reclaim the gospel of peace.
It is my hope that the song of this crazy bird will be joined in an ever-growing chorus by those who believe it is possible to BE the change we want to see in the world. That the song , sung through whatever cold and dark , lonely and bitter times, offers the assurance that the glimpses of beauty we see, the signs of the Kingdom, are waiting to be brought into fullness,
It is my hope that each person who visits this site will take up the song…
Come, be a crazy bird. Sing it. Sing it again.
Let’s transform this world, one person, one system, one organization at a time.
This crazy bird sings on….