This year I have been particularly aware of, and enthralled by, the numbers of geese that have passed overhead, their ragged “V’s” flaking their way through the autumn skies, punctuated by honking, squawks and squeaks. They have a purpose, a goal, intent on reaching some verdant pasture or Scottish loch, and the lead goose heads in just the right direction, navigating by some GPS mechanism that was invented by its loving Heavenly Father long before man claimed the glory. Several early morning flights have been made all the more spectacular by the morning sun, peeping over the horizon, and reflecting from their underbodies, applying a bright yellow glow to their normally dull colours, in stark contrast to the light blues and greys of the morning sky. But there was one strange happening a short while ago – a group of about twenty geese appeared with more of the usual audio accompaniment than usual, but there was no “V”. In fact they were all over the place. They were heading in roughly the same direction, but they kept veering away from each other and then, directly above my head, the group split into two, about five of them flew South rather hesitantly, and the remainder continued towards the East. But there was still no “V” displayed. More of a gaggle than the normal skein or wedge. Too many leaders and not enough followers, I suspect.
I felt God remind me that His design for geese also applies to mankind – we are designed to be led by the Holy Spirit; He knows exactly which way we should go. And as we remain open to His gentle leading we will end up in the right pastures. I smiled at the thought that groups of Christians, the local church or community of faith, will also have its fair share of honking, squawks and squeaks, perhaps voicing complaints over the pecking orders, or who should be lead goose. And one or two, or even a group, will fall away from the rest, setting their own agendas, building their own denominations, preferring to find their own pastures. There will even be leaderless Christians, who have become deaf to the Holy Spirit’s voice, and who flap their way in the wrong direction, sadly unaware of their malfunctioning GPS, and ending up in barren places, or no place at all.
Thinking further about the sun reflecting off the geese’s underbellies, I felt God asked me what I was reflecting. Was it the light from His Son, or no light at all? In John 15:26 Jesus said, “… I will send you the Advocate—the Spirit of truth. He will come to you from the Father and will testify all about Me.” So, hopefully, as I embrace the Holy Spirit, those around me will see the reflection of Jesus. And as the geese press on towards their goal, so must we, heading for the “Heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” (Phil 3:14).