Autumn, The Heron with the Golden Wings

Our story begins in the Heartland of America, at a rookery.

Many birds and other forest creatures would gather here for a drink or to hunt for food.

But today was different. Mr. and Mrs. Heron were eagerly anticipating the birth of their

daughter, who was still unnamed at this time. Slowly, she began to emerge from her egg, her

head poking slightly out of the eggshell. With a strong push, she emerged and gave out her

first cry of happiness. Something was different about the Heron's daughter. She had the most

beautiful golden tipped wings. When she stretched out her wings for the first time, they

seemed to sparkle like the Sun itself. They called her 'Autumn' because her wings reminded

them of the trees' golden hues and the glory they expressed when they gently waved their

palms in praise to their Creator. Autumn was elated with her gift, so much so that she wanted

to show every creature in the forest her remarkable wings.

In time, Autumn learned to fly and she quickly spread the news of her unique gift to her friends and acquaintances. Many were very pleased with her lovely wings, and were amazed at how gold dust sparkled behind them when she soared effortlessly through the air. It had become an inspiration for the privileged few that had a chance to behold it.

However, some did not care for her so-called "gift". They quickly dismissed her as being "proud" and "arrogant", only delighting in her own wealth and seemingly shunning others. But, she wasn't doing this at all. She was sharing the love, joy and laughter that her Creator had given so freely to her. These creatures had just been jealous, and angered by her cheerful heart. Yet, she told them their creator too had blessed them. All creatures had been given the gift of spreading laughter, joy, generosity, friendship and God's love through these gifts. "Each of you is different. But we're all God's creatures ! Just sharing your gifts can multiply happiness. Even though we have our own talents, likes and ways of doing things, just remember the 'golden wings' that you have, your gifts.", Autumn would say. Some would take these words to heart, while others went their own way. But, she had shared her wisdom and her unending joviality with everyone and anyone. She knew that even though there were those who did not hear her message she would continue to share her unconditional love for others as well as brightening lives with her shimmering golden-wing tips.

If you look into the sky when the Sun is setting, you may see Autumn's shadow.

If you are feeling down, never forget Autumn's words. Although you may not have

golden wings, the gold of God's love can cause you to reach beyond the clouds and accomplish

anything. Don't be afraid to share your talents with others, for when you do, God smiles

brightly and you can always feel His warmth…The Promise that you are unconditionally loved,

and a precious child of His Kingdom.

By: Elizabeth Berndt

October 23, 2002