Sunday Inspiration – Storks

Wood Storks on top of tree at Circle B -7-22-11 by Lee

Wood Storks on top of tree at Circle B by Lee

“Where the birds make their nests; The stork has her home in the fir trees.” (Psalms 104:17 NKJV)

Wow! While searching through the index of this blog, I realized that the “Sunday Inspiration” was started in January of 2014. I had no idea it has been that long ago. Also, I realized that we are just about back to where it began.  Over the last three and a half years, you have been exposed to almost every family of birds in the world. They were randomly produced, then the Taxonomic order was begun with the Passerines, Singing and Perching Birds. It was finished up and then we started through taxonomically several months ago. Do you have any idea of the numbers of avian wonders that you have have been exposed to? Neither do I. :)

Currently, there are 10,681 species named with I.O.C., plus all the subspecies. I trust as you have seen their photos and listened to Christian music in the background, that it has been more pleasant than looking through guide books. :)

All of this has been said to let you know that if the “Sunday Inspiration” starts skipping over certain families, then it was already covered. The links to the skipped over ones will be listed. Most of you, like me, probably had no idea of what order the birds are listed in. We have all been learning as we have produced these Inspirations in order.

Marabou Stork LP Zoo by Lee

Storks are members of the Ciconiidae family and the only family in the Ciconiiformes Order. Storks are large to very large waterbirds. They range in size from the marabou, which stands 152 cm (60 in) tall and can weigh 8.9 kg (20 lb) the Abdim’s stork, which is only 75 cm (30 in) high and only weighs 1.3 kg (2.9 lb). Their shape is superficially similar to the herons, with long legs and necks, but they are heavier-set. There is some sexual dimorphism (differences between males and females) in size, with males being up to 15% bigger than females in some species (for example the saddle-billed stork), but almost no difference in appearance. The only difference is in the colour of the iris of the two species in the genus Ephippiorhynchus.

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) by Ian

The bills of the storks are large to very large, and vary considerably between the genera. The shape of the bills is linked to the diet of the different species. The large bills of the Ciconia storks are the least specialised. Larger are the massive and slightly upturned bills of the Ephippiorhynchus and the jabiru. These have evolved to hunt for fish in shallow water. Larger still are the massive daggers of the two adjutants and marabou (Leptoptilos), which are used to feed on carrion and in defence against other scavengers, as well as for taking other prey. The long, ibis-like downcurved bills of the Mycteria storks have sensitive tips that allow them to detect prey by touch (tactilocation) where cloudy conditions would not allow them to see it. The most specialised bills of any storks are those of the two openbills (Anastomus.), which as their name suggested is open in the middle when their bill is closed.

Saddlebill Stork at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

“Even the stork in the heavens Knows her appointed times; And the turtledove, the swift, and the swallow Observe the time of their coming. But My people do not know the judgment of the LORD.” (Jeremiah 8:7 NKJV)

The storks vary in their tendency towards migration. Temperate species like the white stork, black stork and Oriental stork undertake long annual migrations in the winter. The routes taken by these species have developed to avoid long distance travel across water, and from Europe, this usually means flying across the Straits of Gibraltar or east across the Bosphorus and through Israel and the Sinai. Studies of young birds denied the chance to travel with others of their species have shown that these routes are at least partially learnt, rather than being innate as they are in passerine migrants. Migrating black storks are split between those that make stopovers on the migration between Europe and their wintering grounds in Africa, and those that don’t.

Abdim's Stork (Ciconia abdimii) ©©MichelleBartsch

Abdim’s Stork (Ciconia abdimii) ©©MichelleBartsch

The Abdim’s stork is another migrant, albeit one that migrates within the tropics. It breeds in northern Africa, from Senegal to the Red Sea, during the wet season, and then migrates to Southern Africa. Many species that aren’t regular migrants will still make smaller movements if circumstances require it; others may migrate over part of their range. This can also include regular commutes from nesting sites to feeding areas. Wood storks have been observed feeding 130 km (81 mi) from their colony. [Information from Wikipedia, with editing.]

The birds in Taxonomic order are listed here: IOC World Bird List

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“Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:37-39 KJV)


“Amazing Grace” and “I Love You” – Orchestra and Choir combined”.
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More Sunday Inspirations
Birds of the Bible – Storks
Wordless Birds

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Lee’s Two Word Tuesday – 10/11/16

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Stork At Their Nest ©Science Photo Library

THE STORK

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“Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.” (Psalm 104:17)

Storks At Their Nest ©Science Photo Library

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More Daily Devotionals

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Bird of the Bible – Stork

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Birds of the Bible – Wood Storks

Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) by Lee

Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) by Lee

While we were on the same birdwatching trip to Circle B (American Bittern), we encountered a Wood Stork. There are five verses in the Bible that mention the Stork:

And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat. (Leviticus 11:19 KJV)

And the stork, and the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat. (Deuteronomy 14:18 KJV)

Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house. (Psalms 104:17 KJV)

Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD. (Jeremiah 8:7 KJV)

Then lifted I up mine eyes, and looked, and, behold, there came out two women, and the wind was in their wings; for they had wings like the wings of a stork: and they lifted up the ephah between the earth and the heaven. (Zechariah 5:9 KJV)

Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) by Lee Landing

Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) by Lee Landing

While we were birdwatching at Circle B just before Christmas, a Wood Stork flew over and landed in a tree a good way from us. Thanks to the zoom on my camera, I was able to capture its picture. They amaze me that they are “ugly” up close, but when they fly, they are so beautiful and graceful to watch. We see them quite often here and I have been known to feed them at Lake Morton. They also fly over our house and land in our community pond.

Lee feeding Wood Stork at Lake Morton by Dan

Lee feeding Wood Stork at Lake Morton by Dan 2011

As mentioned above, Storks are birds in the Bible and are members of the Ciconiidae – Storks Family. Currently there are 19 Storks in this family. The Bible does not tell which one is being mentioned, but most like one of the Storks that lived in Israel.

Our Wood Stork here is a broad-winged soaring bird that flies with its neck outstretched and legs extended. It forages usually where lowering water levels concentrate fish in open wetlands; it also frequents paddy fields. Walking slowly and steadily in shallow water up to its belly, it seeks prey, which, like that of most of its relatives, consists of fish, frogs and large insects. It catches fish by holding its bill open in the water until a fish is detected. (Wikipedia)

“Tall and long-legged, the wood stork is the largest wading bird native to America. It is white with black flight feathers, distinctive because of its dark, featherless head (down to the upper neck) and thick, down-curved bill. Wood storks fly with neck and legs extended, interrupting strong wing beats with brief glides; their wingspan is 5 1/2 feet.” (FL FWCC) Their length is 33.5–45.3 in (85–115 cm) and weigh between72.3 to 93.1 oz (2050–2640 g). (NatGeo)

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Birds In Hymns – My Refuge

Painted Stork (Mycteria leucocephala) w youngby Nikhil Devasar

Painted Stork (Mycteria leucocephala) w youngby Nikhil Devasar

… In the LORD put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain? (Psalms 11:1 KJV)

Words: Al­ice B. Wood, 1901.

Music: Ack­worth, M. B. Will­is

My Refuge

To the rock flies the cony, the stork to her nest,
When tempests are gathering and black is the west;
So swift, by life’s trials o’erwhelmed and oppressed,
I fly to my refuge, Jehovah, my rest!

The nest, whither speedeth the storm beaten bird,
Aloft, on the fir top by tempests is stirred;
But the nest of my refuge no storm wind can smite;
’Tis the breast of Jehovah; I’m safe from afright.

The rock where the cony securely may hide
Is set in the mountain’s cold, pitiless side;
But the rock of my safety, the home of my quest,
’Tis the heart of my Savior: How warm and how blest!

Then blow, thou wild tempest, I fear not thy might,
Tho’ blackly thou lowerest, my prospect is bright;
Jehovah, my Savior, I fly to Thy breast;
Dear rock of my refuge! Dear sheltering nest!

 


Storks Shadowing Baby in Lakeland by Dan

Storks Shadowing Baby in Lakeland by Dan

In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. (Psalms 62:7 KJV)

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. (Psalms 91:1-2 KJV)

Alice Boise Wood (?-1919) was the daughter of Pro­fess­or James R. Boise, Wood was the first wo­man to grad­u­ate from Chi­ca­go Un­i­ver­si­ty. She went on to teach Greek there, and was known as a po­et.

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More Birds in Hymns

See ~ Wordless Birds

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Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Part 3


WHY GOD PREFERS TO MAKE A COVENANT WITH BIRDS?

“Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD.” Jeremiah 8:7

Wood Stork by Dan at Lake Morton Jan 2011

Wood Stork by Dan at Lake Morton

The stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times

Well, here is another reason why God prefers to make a covenant with the birds. The stork knows her appointed time. Every bird keeps up to the appointed time from dawn to dusk. Their breeding and migration are also set to an appointed time. Birds neither breed nor migrate as and when they wish. Even their nests are built on an appointed time at the appointed direction using the appointed material.

Storks build their nests where others would never dream of spending their nights. Its choice of nesting site that ranges from a high tension electric wire to a high-rise building. They prefer high places so that it would be easier for them to locate a stupendous meal for their ravenous chicks that eat almost 60% of their body weight. Why should they risk their lives and build their nests in such dangerous places? The storks know their appointed places as well as they know their appointed breeding time.

Some of the oldest stork nests in Europe are more than seven feet wide and ten feet deep has been in use for hundreds of years and still are being used by storks as breeding homes when they begin to arrive in April from their African wintering grounds. How well they organize themselves before migration is quite amazing. Male storks arrive a few days earlier, mend their nests and then would wait for his mate to arrive.

Our Bridegroom, Jesus Christ had left us more than 2000 years back; not to mend an old depleted castle in heaven but to build a new mansion with streets of Gold, from where we would reign with Him for years to follow. He is not going to wait for the arrival of His bride like the male stork that awaits its mate but would descend like a thief to take His bride with Him. No clocks, no calendars yet, the birds prepare for their rigorous seasonal excursion weeks in advance and return to the same nest every year.

We are not going for a yearly excursion to heaven. This is going to be a once in a lifetime journey, that would take us to rest with Him forever and ever. How well are we preparing for this eternal journey? How do the birds do this every year? They should know their appointed time isn’t it? Do we know our appointed time? If only we had known our appointed time, God would’ve made a covenant with us isn’t it? We need to pray like David for God to reveal to us our appointed time…

“LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.” Psalm 39:4

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) by Nikhil

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) by Nikhil

 The turtle……. observe the time of their coming..

 “Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD.” Jeremiah 8:7

When do the turtles come?

Where do they come?

Why do they observe the time of their coming?

Earth’s magnetic fields and astronomical cues are a couple of the many different hypothesis found to influence turtle’s migration. Though the usage of astronomical cue hypothesis among turtles doesn’t have concrete evidence, the earth’s magnetic field hypothesis should stand good since scientific evidence proves that turtles do have magnetic interceptors. They may not see the sun, moon and the stars while they are in the ocean but still, the reason that they are able to time their migration to perfection. Wikipedia explains the magnetic field hypothesis like this.

In regards to the magnetic field hypothesis, there are three main concepts that should be considered. The concepts include electromagnetic induction, magnetic field chemical reactions, and magnetite. In regards to electromagnetic induction, it is assumed that the sea turtles have electroreceptor. Although evidence has been found in other species such as rays and sharks, no evidence has shown that there are electroreceptors in sea turtles making this hypothesis invalid. A second concept from the experimentation by Irwin involves chemical reactions which are commonly found in a variety of species of newts and birds. The strength of the magnetic field affects the chemical reactions within the bodies of the newts and birds. The final concept includes the magnetic crystals that form during the magnetic pulses from the earth’s magnetic fields. These magnetic crystals formed by magnetite give the turtles directional information and guides in migration. The magnetite affects the cells of the nervous system of the sea turtle by producing a signal that references the forces of the magnetic field and the direction and magnitude that is applied. If this magnetite is used in the migration, when the earth’s magnetic poles reverse at the dipole moment, they signal that the sea turtle nervous system receives will change the migration direction. Regardless of the hypothesis, hatchling turtles have the ability to determine the direction and inclination angle of which they are swimming with aide from magnetic fields” (Wikipedia)

Science says that if the earth’s magnetic field is stronger, the electromagnetic storms would be too severe and if the earth’s magnetic field is weaker, the ozone shield and life on land would be inadequately protected from stellar and solar radiation. In other words, God controls the magnetic field of the earth so well that it has turned earth to be the fittest planet for lives to survive. While God controls the magnetic field, the turtles rely on this magnetic field to ignite its migration. Don’t we see how turtles observe the time of their coming?

Turtles migrate, so they need to know the time of their coming.  You may wonder what does this have to do with us, humans. Do we observe time when we go to church? Or do we go as when we please. We rush to school, college or office on time. At times we are not bothered to even skip our breakfast in order to reach on time. We don’t seem to understand that God would be eagerly waiting for us in church even before the service starts. Jesus is not only preparing a mansion for us in heaven, He even waits for the last soul to come into His flock. Don’t we have a God who waits eagerly for His lost son?

…..But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.” Luke 15:20

Out of the ten servant maids, only five were ready for the appointed time to meet the Bride, while the rest had gone out to but oil. If they had observed the timing of Jesus, they would’ve filled their lamps long ago with oil and wouldn’t have waited for the last-minute isn’t it? God says that He knows our going out and coming in. Can we say the same? How well do we observe God’s time? The turtle’s body is in tune with the earth’s magnetic field. How well is our body, the temple of the true Living God tuned to do His will? Is this the reason why God preferred to choose the wildlife to make covenant I wonder…

For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not delay.” Habakkuk 2:3

Common Crane (Grus grus) by Nikhil Devasar

Common Crane (Grus grus) by Nikhil Devasar

The crane…… observe the time of their coming

“Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD.” Jeremiah 8:7

The migration of cranes are another good example of how these feathered friends time their migration based on the angle of sunlight , length of the day and the hormonal changes that happen before migration. The hormonal changes allow them to gain weight by way of fat reserves that they gain due to change of diet. Whooping crabs feed on lots of blue crabs to gain weight before migration. These maybe the real reasons for cranes to migrate.

We will soon have to depart on a permanent migration to heaven; but not before we have a mid-air meet with the King of kings Lord Jesus Christ. How many of us truly believe or surely have the assurance that we will meet our creator before we embark on our journey to heaven? We all want to go to heaven but we don’t want to die. Many out there are bent on somehow going to heaven. They worship, they pray, they tithe, they willing and fervently do almost all that the Bible asks us to do. But, they are scared to die. Isn’t it strange? Should we not prepare for the date and the time of our departure?

 “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” James 4:14

But, the actual take off of cranes happens on days that are very sunny. This sunny weather warms some areas more than the others like the walkway is hotter than the lawn and the land is hotter than lakes and streams. This difference in temperature causes air to rise from the warmer areas and causes an air thermal. These airs thermal not only causes the cranes to stay aloft for longer durations but also helps them fly hundreds of miles in a single day using very little or no energy at all. They will also wait for the right day and will not depart until the day has the right length before their marathon journey. The cranes know its appointed time, if only we know our appointed time God would have surely made a covenant with us instead of wildlife species isn’t it?

The church is eagerly (?)waiting to depart to meet the King. No one knows the time that God has slated for this major space schedule. But still, though we don’t know the moment of actual occurrence, why most of us have set up benchmarks and some are even trying to raising their spiritual bench mark to measure up to the yardsticks spread by the rulebook of God? We take the following verse as a supporting document to lay emphasis on our fickle faith. Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” Mathew 24:44.

But then, there is another verse which says, Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.” Amos 3:7. If a crane could know their coming, do we not have the privilege to seek dispensation from God? He did not give His precious life on the cross for the cranes isn’t it? Since He bore the cross for us, He is sure to reveal our going out from this world, in other words His coming in to this world to transfigure us in order to make us worthy citizens of heaven.  Before Jesus left for His heavenly sojourn,”….. He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15. Do we spread the gospel as was told by His? Did we the person who sits next to us at office? Or have we spread His good news to our classmate in school or college? Well, it is still uncertain if we have reached the person who lives next door to spread the gospel. How dare do we expect God to reveal His coming in when we do not find the courage to even talk about Jesus in public? Go back to the first sentence of this paragraph. God clearly says, Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.” Amos 3:7.. Does it not mean that God expects us to serve Him and in return He shall reveal His secrets I wonder…

Barn Swallow by Dan

Barn Swallow by Dan

The swallows observe the time of their coming

“Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the LORD.” Jeremiah 8:7

European swallows spend the winter in Africa south of the Sahara, in Arabia and in the Indian sub-continent. While the British swallows spend their winter in South Africa: travelling through western France, across the Pyrenees, down eastern Spain into Morocco, and across the Sahara. Some birds follow the west coast of Africa avoiding the Sahara, and other European swallows travel further east and down the Nile Valley.  Outside of the breeding season some species may form large flocks, and may also roost communally. This is thought to provide protection from predators such as sparrow-hawks and hobbies. These roosts can be enormous; one winter roosting site of Barn Swallows in Nigeria attracted 1.5 million individuals, says Wikipedia.

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” Mathew 18:20

God did not give the Bible for swallows but still how did they know that communal roosting would give them protection from predators. The church had proliferated endlessly from the first congregation of hundred twenty members at the upper room to millions under thousands of denomination and doctrines around the world. In spite of this phenomenal growth, the church is being targeted and thrashed in so many countries. If only the church had unity, the whole world would have known about the power of a united church. The power of unity is thus shown in the following verse. And five of you shall chase an hundred, and an hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight: and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword.” Leviticus 26:8. Do we ever have a chance of witnessing those days in our life time?

The upper room congregations of those hundred and twenty disciples were touched by tongues of heavenly fire, Contemporary Churches gather in so many different places from a small upper room to a gigantic stadium. Yet nothing quite stunning as that had happened as it did on the day of the Pentecost. Though the churches are not on fire for God, church buildings and believers are being set on fire for following Christ. Why? Is it ‘cause of lack of faith in God or lack of oneness of mind among churches?

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour.

For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.

Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone?

And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

For Christ’s sake let us stand united like swallows so that God would make covenant with us…

While leading the Israelites in the wilderness, Moses never moved forward till the Pillar of Cloud moved from the Tabernacle. He moved when the Pillar moved and camped where the Pillar stood. God has not given us the Pillar of Cloud; instead He has sent His own spirit to guide us. The Pillar of Cloud resembles the anointing of God. Do we wait for the Spirit of God to lead us in all that we do? There are times we start doing things without asking for God’s direction and life turns miserable. If only we had listened to the voice God…

“For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.” Luke 12:12  

Emu Lowry Pk Zoo by Lee

Emu Lowry Pk Zoo by Lee

Emu needs lots of water every day and they run behind rain clouds in the hope that they would get water. Do we really run behind the Living Water? Do we still have the thirst that was found during the initial days when we gave our life to the Lord? Most of us would certainly answer in the negative. So, let us start learning from the beasts and the birds in particular, so that God would make a covenant with each one of us. And that’s what Prophet Job prescribes for us in his book…

“But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee:

Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee.” Job 12:7-8

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Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant ~ by AJ Mithra

(Written by A J – layout and photos added by Lee)

See:

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Intro

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Part 2

Birds of the Bible

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Yours in YESHUA,

a j mithra

Please visit us at:

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Birds of the Bible – Stork III

Wood Stork by Dan at Lake Morton Jan 2011

Wood Stork by Dan at Lake Morton Jan 2011

Dan and I were out birdwatching this last week several times. We have the privilege of seeing the Wood Storks quite frequently. The Birds of the Bible – Stork and the  Birds of the Bible – Stork II articles have covered different aspects of the Stork. This time, the Bible passage in Job 39:13 is going to be covered.

The wings of the ostrich wave proudly, But are her wings and pinions like the kindly stork’s? (Job 39:13 NKJV)

The idea of the verse is that the Ostrich waves or flaps her wings proudly, but she lacks several things that the Stork has like the feathers and wings of a stork and nor the care for her young as the Stork show its young.

God has created them both, but they do not behave the same. Each has it’s own design and place to fill.

Lee feeding Wood Stork at Lake Morton by Dan Jan 2011

Lee feeding Wood Stork at Lake Morton by Dan Jan 2011

What is interesting is the different translations of Job 39:13. I use the e-Sword Bible program and have loaded every one of the free (English) Bibles and also have the New American Standard Bible and New King James Versions installed, which we purchased. One of the neat things you can do is select a verse and then choose “Compare” and every one of the Bible versions of that verse shows. It never ceases to amaze me that the versions can vary some times so much. This is one of those verses. (If you haven’t tried out the e-Sword Bible, it is worth loading and using and it is free for most of it. They also have the Bible in different languages.)

For now, I am going to show some of the versions that show the Stork:

(Brenton)  The peacock has a beautiful wing: if the stork and the ostrich conceive, it is worthy of notice,
(Darby)  The wing of the ostrich beats joyously–But is it the stork’s pinion and plumage?
(ERV) “An ostrich gets excited and flaps its wings, but it cannot fly. Its wings and feathers are not like the wings of a stork.
(GNB) How fast the wings of an ostrich beat! But no ostrich can fly like a stork.
(JPS) The wing of the ostrich beateth joyously; but are her pinions and feathers the kindly stork’s?
(LITV) The wing of the ostriches flap joyously, though not like the stork’s pinions for flight.
(MKJV) The wing of the ostrich beats joyously; though not like the stork’s pinions for flight.
(NKJV) “The wings of the ostrich wave proudly, But are her wings and pinions like the kindly stork’s?

Storks Shadowing Baby in Lakeland by Dan

Some of the other versions either mention a hawk, heron, or just the pinion and plumage of love. Ostriches are known for abandoning their young (Job 39:13-18 Birds of the Bible – Ostrich I) and the Storks are protective of their young (Stork II). The Ostriches don’t fly particularly, but the Storks have great wings and migrate good distances (Stork II).

Here are some facts about the Storks wings from various books and internet sites:

“Stork’s wings are built in a way, which allows them to take advantage of the streams of upward moving air. They are long and, compared to other birds, very wide – similar to these of vultures, condors, pelicans and the closest relatives of storks. Large wings of a stork “catch” the up going streams of air. Storks travel like gliders, taking advantage of the air movement.”

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) by Nikhil Devasar

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) by Nikhil Devasar

“Storks tend to use soaring, gliding flight, which conserves energy. Soaring requires thermal air currents. Ottomar Anschütz’s famous 1884 album of photographs of storks inspired the design of Otto Lilienthal’s experimental Gliders of the late 19th century. Storks are heavy, with wide wingspans: the Marabou Stork, with a wingspan of 3.2 m (10.5 ft), joins the Andean Condor in having the widest wingspan of all living land birds.” (Wikipedia)

“White Storks rely on the uplift of air thermals for long distance flight, taking great advantage of them during annual migrations between Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa. The shortest route south would take them over the Mediterranean, but since thermals only form over land, storks take a detour and avoid long water crossings. It has been estimated that storks metabolize the same amount of body fat to travel a distance in flapping flight as 23 times further by soaring, so they usually avoid prolonged wing flapping flight. Long flights over water may occasionally be undertaken. “

To facilitate the sea crossing, birds from central Europe can take an eastern migration corridor, crossing the straits of Bosphorus to Turkey, traversing the Levant, and then bypassing the Sahara Desert by following the Nile, or follow a western route over the straits of Gibraltar. These corridors maximize the help from the thermals and thus save energy. The eastern route is by far the more important, with 530,000 birds taking this crossing, making this stork the second commonest migrant after the Honey Buzzard. The flocks of raptors, storks and Great White Pelicans can stretch for 200 km (125 mi). The eastern route is twice as long as the western, but storks take the same time to reach the wintering grounds by either route. Juvenile storks set of on their first southward migration in an inherited direction, but if displaced from that bearing by weather conditions, they are unable to compensate, and may end up in a new wintering location. Adults can compensate for strong winds and adjust their direction to finish at their normal winter sites, because they are familiar with the location. For the same reason, all spring migrants, even those from displaced wintering locations, can find their way back to the traditional breeding sites. Once in Africa, the storks spend the winter in savanna from Kenya and Uganda south to the Cape Province of South Africa. In these areas they congregate in large flocks which may reach a thousand individuals or more.” (Wikipedia)

Woolly-necked Stork (Ciconia episcopus) by Nikhil Devasar

Woolly-necked Stork (Ciconia episcopus) by Nikhil Devasar

(From Matthew Henry’s Commentary) – “Job 39:13-18
The ostrich is a wonderful animal, a very large bird, but it never flies. Some have called it a winged camel. God here gives an account of it, and observes,
I. Something that it has in common with the peacock, that is, beautiful feathers (Job_39:13): Gavest thou proud wings unto the peacocks? so some read it. Fine feathers make proud birds. The peacock is an emblem of pride; when he struts, and shows his fine feathers, Solomon in all his glory is not arrayed like him. The ostrich too has goodly feathers, and yet is a foolish bird; for wisdom does not always go along with beauty and gaiety. Other birds do not envy the peacock or the ostrich their gaudy colours, nor complain for want of them; why then should we repine if we see others wear better clothes than we can afford to wear? God gives his gifts variously, and those gifts are not always the most valuable that make the finest show. Who would not rather have the voice of the nightingale than the tail of the peacock, the eye of the eagle and her soaring wing, and the natural affection of the stork, than the beautiful wings and feathers of the ostrich, which can never rise above the earth, and is without natural affection?

Storks are in the Ciconiidae Family (slideshow) and there are 19 species of them around the world. The Storks are the only family in the Ciconiiformes Order. See the Storks Page.

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Stork – The Kind Mother – by A. J. Mithra

Stork – The Kind Mother

Asian Openbill (Anastomus oscitans) on nest by Nikhil

Asian Openbill (Anastomus oscitans) on nest by Nikhil

The Hebrew word for stork
Is equivalent to “KIND MOTHER”,
and the care of storks for their young,
in their highly visible nests,
made the stork a widespread emblem
of parental care.

The image of a stork carrying an infant
wrapped in a sling held in its beak
is common in popular culture
and again a symbol of parental care…

As the chicks eat lots of food,
the parents find and eat the food.
Then they come back to the nest
and spit up the food for the chicks to eat..

We are so privileged, for,
JESUS gave HIMSELF
as THE LIVING BREAD
and as THE LIVING WATER,
so that we may have life eternal…
Father and mother may forsake,
but, JESUS will never leave us
nor forsake us..

It was widely noted in ancient natural history,
that the stork would prefer to be consumed
with the nest in a fire,
rather than fly and abandon it.
Such is its commitment towards its family..

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) by Ian

White Stork (Ciconia ciconia) by Ian

How committed are we to JESUS?
We say that JESUS is our nest,
I mean SHELTER,
but, how many of us would still
have the courage to walk into the fire
like those three young men?
Do we have the courage to face
persecution like Stephen?
Or will run away from JESUS
and sit in the enemy’s camp like Peter?
When JESUS becomes our NEST,
HE shall give us our ETERNAL REST…

And my hand hath found as a nest the riches of the people: and as one gathereth eggs that are left, have I gathered all the earth; and there was none that moved the wing, or opened the mouth, or peeped. (Isaiah 10:14 KJV)

Have a blessed day!

Yours in YESHUA,
A. J. Mithra at Crosstree

Click to see more of A. J.’s articles


See the Stork page (a Bird of the Bible)

Storks are in the Ciconiidae Family of the Ciconiiformes Order

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Birds of the Bible – Stork II

Wood Storks in Top of Tree by Lee

Wood Storks in Top of Tree by Lee

Yesterday, Dan and I went out to the Circle B Bar Reserve for some birdwatchng. I think I would have to call it, “Stork Day.” From our photos, I have counted well over 100 Wood Storks and that doesn’t count the ones we didn’t photograph. It is time to find out some more about the stork.

From the first Birds of the Bible – Stork article,we found out that the stork is on the unclean list of birds that were not to be eaten by the Israelites. (Leviticus 11:19 and Deuteronomy 14:18). Jeremiah 8:7, tells of “her appointed times” (migration) and Zechariah 5:9 mentions the “wings of a stork.”

Psalms is going to provide our thoughts for today.

The trees of the LORD are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted; Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house. (Psalms 104:16-17)

 The Whole Tree

The Whole Tree

As you can tell from the photos, the storks like to hang out in the trees. The trees were loaded with them. We were out there recently (September 18th) and I did not see any on that visit. Jeremiah was correct, “Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times;” Migration has been underway and these are either resting while on their trip or they are going to be here for the winter.

“Storks (family Ciconiidae) make their nests of sticks, reeds and grass, in tall trees. When the chicks hatch, their thin, featherless skin is extremely vulnerable to the direct rays of the sun. The parent bird has two responses to the high temperature problem — if water is nearby, the stork fills its large beak, returns to the nest, and douses the tiny chicks with cooling water. If this is not sufficient, the parent then performs a most remarkable feat — it stands over the young and spreads its large wings over the entire nest, thus shading the chicks from the sun’s rays! Often it will do this for hours at a time.” from “Birdbrains?” at Answers in Genesis

Storks Shadowing Baby in Lakeland by Dan

Storks Shadowing Baby in Lakeland by Dan

When the Lord created the Stork, the knowledge to protect their babies was put in them. Our God and Savior has promised to meet our needs. If He cares about the birds, how much more does he care about us?

“Storks are large, long-legged, long-necked wading birds with long stout bills, belonging to the family Ciconiidae. They occur in most of the warmer regions of the world and tend to live in drier habitats than the related herons, spoonbills and ibises; they also lack the powder down that those groups use to clean off fish slime. Storks have no syrinx and are mute, giving no bird call; bill-clattering is an important mode of stork communication at the nest. Many species are migratory. Most storks eat frogs, fish, insects, earthworms, and small birds or mammals. There are 19 living species of storks in six genera.

Storks tend to use soaring, gliding flight, which conserves energy. Soaring requires thermal air currents. Ottomar Ansch??tz’s famous 1884 album of photographs of storks inspired the design of Otto Lilienthal’s experimental gliders of the late 19th century. Storks are heavy with wide wingspans, and the Marabou Stork, with a wingspan of 3.2 m (10.5 feet), shares the distinction of “longest wingspan of any land bird” with the Andean Condor.

Their nests are often very large and may be used for many years. Some have been known to grow to over 2 m (6 feet) in diameter and about 3 m (10 feet) in depth. Storks were once thought to be monogamous, but this is only true to a limited extent. They may change mates after migrations, and migrate without them. They tend to be attached to nests as much as partners.

Storks’ size, serial monogamy, and faithfulness to an established nesting site contribute to their prominence in mythology and culture.

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Timmy and the Stork

Wood Stork by Lee

Wood Stork by Lee

I couldn’t resist this, because the Stork is one of our Birds of the Bible. And, besides that, this is funny.  This was printed in our local “Orange Peel Gazette” which comes out at least once a month and has jokes in it.

Timmy and the Stork

A man took his little boy to the zoo for the very first time. Each time they would see a new animal the little boy would ask, “What’s that?”  And each time the father would explain.  When they came to a pen with a very large bird inside the father said, “And that, Jimmy is a Stork.” The boy stood there for a few moments and the began to wave and say, “Hi! I’m Timmy!”  After several times of repeating this he finally turned to his father and exclaimed, “Guess I’m all grown up, Dad, he doesn’t recognize me.”

Timmy's delivery

Timmy’s delivery

 

 

 

 

 

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For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:26 KJV)

 

Interesting Things – A Lesson from the Stork

SmileyCentral.com

“A Lesson from the Stork

“Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the Lord.” (Jeremiah 8:7)

The migratory behavior of birds is fascinating. If it only occurred once, we would call it a miracle. Yet we see bird migrations twice a year, so we are desensitized to the Creator-designed magnificence of these journeys.

Geographically, Israel sits center-stage among the great continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa. Many birds migrate from European and Asian winters to Africa, with the migrations reversed prior to summer. …….”

Click link to see the rest of this devotional today from Days of Praise.

Birds of the Bible – Under His Wing

This week’s Birds of the Bible will divert from the introduction of a specific bird to a part of the bird. We had the privilege several weeks ago to visit a “rookery,” (a place where many birds have nests and raise their young. The Wood Storks had their wings spread out to keep the sun off of their young, which is a common behavior of birds. Birds also use their wings to protect them when danger is nearby and for warmth. It reminded me of the many Scripture references and songs about the protection or shadow of the wings.
Psalms 61:3-4 (KJV), says, “For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in thy tabernacle forever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah. “
Covert as defined by the Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1)
–adjective
concealed; secret; disguised; covered; sheltered.

–noun
a covering;
cover; a shelter or hiding place; concealment or disguise
Also called tectrix one of the small feathers that cover the bases of the large feathers of the wings and tail.

Just a few of the Scriptures are:

Keep me as the apple of Your eye; Hide me under the shadow of Your wings, From the wicked who oppress me, From my deadly enemies who surround me. (Psalms 17:8-9 NKJV)
How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. (Psalms 36:7 NKJV)
To the Chief Musician. Set to “Do Not Destroy.” a Michtam of David When He Fled from Saul into the Cave. Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me! For my soul trusts in You; And in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge, Until these calamities have passed by. (Psalms 57:1 NKJV)
Because You have been my help, Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice. (Psalms 63:7 NKJV)
He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.(Psalms 91:3 NKJV)

The wing has been mentioned in many hymns such as:
God Will Take Care of You – ( by Civilla D. Martin, 1869-1948 )
God Will Take Care of You

Be not dismayed whate’er betide,
God will take care of you;
Beneath His wings of love abide,
God will take care of you.

Refrain:
God will take care of you,
Thro’ ev’ry day, O’er all the way;
He will take care of you,
God will take care of you

Under His Wings (by William O. Cushing, 1823-1902)
Under His wings I am safely abiding;
Tho’ the night deepens and tempests are wild.
Still I can trust Him; I know He will keep me;
He has redeemed me, and I am His child.

Refrain:
Under His wings, under His wings,
Who from His love can sever?
Under His wings my soul shall abide,
Safely abide forever.

Under His wings, what a refuge in sorrow!
How the heart yearningly turns to His rest!
Often when earth has no balm for my healing,
There I find comfort, and there I am blest.

Under His wings, O what precious enjoyment!
There will I hide till life’s trials are o’er;
Sheltered, protected, no evil can harm me;
Resting in Jesus I’m safe evermore.

Two other hymns that mention the wings are:
Praise Ye the Lord!
Praise ye the Lord, who o’er all things so wondrously reigneth,
Shelters thee under His wings, yea, so gently sustaineth!
Hast thou not seen How thy desires e’er have been
Granted in what He ordaineth?
And,
God Be with You Till We Meet Again
God be with you till we meet again;
‘Neath His wings protecting hide you,
Daily manna still provide you;
God be with you till we we meet again.

Most information from The Cyber Hymnal

See ~ Wordless Birds

More ~ Birds in Hymns

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