Psalm 18:19 “He brought me out to a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me.”
There’s a bluff at Camp Barnabas that drops down to a small river below. On the other side of the river is a vast meadow, divided between small farms and farmland and fallow fields. All of Camp is on top of the bluff and this topography creates ideal winds for the hawks that fly over the valley all day.
On certain days when the wind is just right, the hawks swoop right in close to the camp, then sweep back out on the draft. They glide and coast, rarely ever flapping a wing, and soar all over that valley. They may occasionally drop down to capture a small animal to eat, but I’ve never seen them do that. The flying doesn’t seem to be utilitarian. Instead, I think they are having a great time. I think they are doing what God created them to do best and most beautifully and are doing it for fun.
If you have seen Chariots of Fire, the Oscar winner for Best Picture in 1981, then you know the famous quote from the protagonist of the movie, Eric Liddell. Liddell was a devout Christian who did mission work, but he was also a world-class runner. When his sister complains that he is focused on the Olympics instead of going to the mission field, Liddell replies, “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run, I feel his pleasure.”
Liddell and the hawks know that when they do what they are created to do, what they are good at, then they glorify God. I’m pretty sure that God enjoys anything we enjoy that’s not sinful. Parents love to watch their kids have a good time and do what they are good at. So I know God loves to see his children have a good time and do what we are good at. I love the idea of God getting pleasure from anything we do. I love the idea that he would watch the hawks and enjoy their grace and their enjoyment of the perfect airstreams. When I watch the hawks with delight, I feel like I am watching them with God and we are sharing that delight together.