Monday, February 4, 2013

American Responsibility Bonanza!

The American Woodcock is an excellent example in the world of nature of the character trait of Responsibility. Webster defines Responsibility as: "moral, legal, or mental accountability; reliability, trustworthiness". The American Woodcock, only 10-12 inches long , weighing a mere 5-7 ounces, is uniquely equipped for survival & is very responsible in the way it uses its assets.

Be Responsible or Be Dead! It's not easy being HUNTED!

The American Woodcock has assets including a unique set of eyes, set far back on its head, giving it binocular vision, enabling it to see 360 degrees. It also has a 3-inch bill that has a flexible, curved upper mandible, suited perfectly for catching its favorite food ever, the earthworm.The Woodcock's ears are also located between the eyes & the bill. Most birds have their ears on the side of their head. Woodcock's uniquely developed ears assist them in locating earthworms underground.

"Can Ewe Dig it"? I feast on earthworms! They're Delicious!
The American Woodcock is a migratory bird of North America that has the distinction of  having the slowest flight speed5 mph, that has ever been recorded for a bird! For a little perspective, birds migrate from speeds of 16-28 mph on the average. The Woodcock also migrates at lower altitudes, resulting in electrical wires taking a toll on their population. Hunters are also a threat to Woodcocks,
responsible for over an estimated 500,000 deaths a year.
One way I escape predators is by Camouflage & "Freezing"!(being perfectly still)
The American Woodcock's feet are also a unique asset that helps it keep food on the table. The feet assist it in locating food because of their excellent sensitivity to underground vibrations. Another asset is the actual coloration of the Woodcock, enabling it to blend beautifully with its environment, & making it difficult to spot for a predator. Males have an unusual breeding aerial display that they put on for the hens. They fly up to 100 yards in the air & dive toward the earth, zigzagging & making a melodious twittering sound with their wings, hoping the female will notice..

Did Ewe know that I do a Fancy Dance to win my Hen?
 Females are the primary care givers to the clutch of 1-4 chicks, which arrive 20-22 days after incubation. Hens construct a ground nest, brood, & feed the chicks, which leave the nest within hours of being hatched. Chicks probe for worms within a couple of days, & make short flights in about 2 weeks. Moms do such a good job, that the chicks are flying independently in about 5 weeks! Imagine ewer kids getting a flying license at 5 weeks old? 

Chicks are hard to spot  on the ground! Can Ewe see me?
Peter Cartwright is an individual that illustrates the character quality of Responsibility. After a dramatic conversion at a camp meeting at age 15, Peter pursued the ministry. Two years after his conversion, Peter was asked to become a circuit riding preacher in a new circuit in the wilderness near Kentucky. Peter answered the call, which was the beginning of a 53 yr. journey that covered many thousands of miles, boldly & Responsibly preaching the Gospel in five states.

I love Camp Meetings!
Peter was a very charismatic preacher, yet also very responsible about his call to preach the Gospel. Circuit riding was a difficult ministry, often requiring Peter to go days without food. He was paid a meager $30-$50 a year, sleeping on the trail , facing floods, disease, & often dealing with a rough crowd of rascals. His 200 lb. frame & bold persona helped him diffuse many a situation. Peter once warned future president General Andrew Jackson that,"he would be damned to Hell just as quickly as any other man if he did not repent". Jackson responded that Christ's ministers ought to love everybody & fear no mortal man, adding he wished he had a few thousand officers like Peter!
Circuit Rider, Horse, Saddle Bags, & the Bible: Perfect Together!
As "God's Plowman," Peter preached to thousands throughout Kentucky, Illinois, & Tennessee, often for 3 hour sessions resulting in women weeping & men trembling. He baptized thousands of converts, urging them to build meeting houses. To meet the demand for preachers, he also initiated the creation of Methodist colleges. He also, along with Francis Asbury, helped usher in the 2nd Great Awakening.
Asbury was instrumental in the 2nd Great Awakening revival!
Sheep are blessed to have such a responsible caretaker as the Shepherd! Without the Shepherd's watchful care, sheep would be hopelessly lost.

"I'm in Good Hands" with the Shepherd!
As Ewe live life today, it's reassuring to know that Ewe have a Good Shepherd who takes His Responsibilities seriously.

"The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want." Ps.23:1

Peter's responsible life illustrates this Quote!

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