Here are a couple of baby Gambel’s quail. In this picture the chicks are looking up at the bush because they are about to trim off some of the new leaves for a snack. As they get older they will be a little less choosy, but at this age, they are consuming foods suitable for their stage of growth. When they become adults they will eat a lot tougher foods, but at this age they only go for the easy stuff.
Spiritually we go through growing up transitions too. Last week I addressed this growth process from the perspective of the church, specifically the church’s responsibility to work with people of all maturity levels. But the immature Christian also has a responsibility, which is they must strive towards maturity.
Like anything else seeking to grow, what believers consume makes a major difference. The believer who is frequently exposed to Scripture is going to be healthier than the one who is only spiritually fed by an occasional sermon. A daily Bible reading, home Bible study, Sunday school class and a Bible memory plan will help you become spiritually strong. But the believer who consumes more video games, popular music or television than Scripture may never really understand what Spiritual maturity is.
“Now everyone who lives on milk is inexperienced with the message about righteousness, because he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature —for those whose senses have been trained to distinguish between good and evil.” Hebrews 5:13-14 (HCSB)
This is a male Gambel’s quail. Specifically it is the lookout. A covey of quail will often post a sentry. One of the birds will be posted on top of a shrub or brush pile so that it can see danger coming and warn the others.
When I saw this bird perching on top of the scrub, I took several pictures of it, and then decided I wanted to find the covey. After all it is the time of year they have chicks with them, and a line of babies would make a great picture.
I stepped out of the car without spooking the bird, then I used my camera to scan every likely hiding place. I continued scanning until I decided I could give up. It would be just as easy to walk towards the sentry. It would call out an alarm, and then join the others for a mad dash out of harm’s way.
My plan worked to a point—a point followed by failure. The reason my plan did not succeed was because I had made a faulty assumption. The vast majority of quail are in coveys, but there are always a few unpaired birds.
This particular bird when it did fly down and take off running, crossed a golf course where I could see with great certainty that it was alone. There would be no pictures of chicks, because there were no chicks. It was a false assumption.
Believers also commonly make false assumptions. We tend to think the people around us are already Christians. But some of them are not. The last thing we want is to have people we thought we would see in heaven never show up. The bad part will be realizing we had missed many chances to talk to them about it.
“Your speech should always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should answer each person.” Colossians 4:6 (HCSB)