The sad cooing of mourning doves is familiar to most people. According to Wikipedia “it is one of the most abundant and widespread of all North American birds. It is also the leading gamebird, with more than 20 million birds (up to 70 million in some years) shot annually in the U.S., both for sport and for meat. Its ability to sustain its population under such pressure stems from its prolific breeding: in warm areas, one pair may raise up to six broods a year.”
(Raising that many descendants might add to their moaning and groaning, as well.)
This sad sound of doves is also a matter of biblical record and a prophetic metaphor. It says in Is.59:11-13 (NASB): “All of us … moan sadly like doves; We hope for justice, but there is none, For salvation, but it is far from us. For our transgressions are multiplied before You, And our sins testify against us; For our transgressions are with us, And we know our iniquities: Transgressing and denying the Lord, And turning away from our God.”
The reason why we often groan and moan is the fact of our sinfulness and its repercussions. Because we have turned away from God we cannot find justice or salvation. Our guilt problem is unresolved. Sin affects us at every step of the way.
Of course, there is no lack of trying to deal with the consequences of our sin with our human resources. We go to the experts, follow the latest trends and business models, consult gurus or shrinks, conduct scientific studies, employ the newest technology, or emulate the Sinatra example “I did it my way!”
These approaches are nothing new: Hosea states that “Ephraim has become like a silly dove without sense; they call to Egypt, they go to Assyria.” (Hos.7:11 NASB). God’s people had been enticed by the way of life, the sophisticated culture, the military might, and the technological advances of the superpowers and gravitated towards them, while simultaneously losing sight of God and His ways. They had become “silly doves”!
Doves (that are normally not silly) were known to have a very accurate sense of direction. That’s why Noah used them after the flood to determine whether they could find back to their home: “He sent out a dove from him, to see if the water was abated from the face of the land; but the dove found no resting place for the sole of her foot, so she returned to him into the ark, for the water was on the surface of all the earth. Then he put out his hand and took her, and brought her into the ark to himself. So he waited yet another seven days; and again he sent out the dove from the ark. The dove came to him toward evening, and behold, in her beak was a freshly picked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the water was abated from the earth. Then he waited yet another seven days, and sent out the dove; but she did not return to him again.” (Gen.8:8-12 NASB).
This homing pigeon found right back to its original roost.
Unfortunately, many of God’s people have lost their orientation to Jesus and instead go to this world’s superpowers for direction. They have become the “silly doves” that Hosea talked about: people that have been enticed, seduced, and deceived by the world.
Jonah, the prophet, whose name means “dove”, was supposed to be oriented towards God, fulfil His mission and speak in His name. But he became a silly, disoriented dove, doing what he thought best and turning away from God.
Instead of being a silly dove, we need to have our homing device firmly fixed on Jesus. He is our home, our center, our life. God Himself made this abundantly clear at the baptism of Jesus, in what He did and what He said: “The moment Jesus came up out of the baptismal waters, the skies opened up and he saw God’s Spirit—it looked like a dove—descending and landing on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “This is my Son, chosen and marked by my love, delight of my life.” (Mt.3:16-17 MSG) If we want to move from mourning to delight, we need to focus on Him, orient ourselves towards Him and home in on Him.
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We are a pastoral couple named Stefan & Heidi König. We have many years of experience in various ministries, and are thankful that God has given us this property to use as a way to bless others who need a place to relax and reconnect with Him.
Kingfisher Spiritual Direction
Direct your heart to Jesus and restore your soul. If you need to hear from God, to grow deeper with Him, consider spiritual direction. An ancient discipline of soul care, Heidi is trained to prayerfully lead you in this practice.