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12 Dec

I have always thought of mourning doves as sweet birds, both grandmotherly and grandfatherly in nature.  They are always seen either in lifetime pairs, cooing at or preening one another, or in a flock.  It doesn’t matter to them that the flock they are seen in is not of the same species.  They just continue to coo, preen, and eat and when they are ready, they take flight with audible squeaks as their wings flap, and awkwardly, head to another spot where they can once again coo, preen and eat.  Docile indeed.

Just the other morning, my husband called my attention to the metal yard adornment in the garden outside our den window.  Each day, he puts seeds and nuts in the seven inch diameter metal cup, and each day it’s emptied by a variety of birds.  But this particular morning, there sat a mourning dove sharing the cup of seeds for the longest time with two hungry sparrows.  The dove’s large size didn’t affect the sparrows.  It was as if the sparrows somehow knew the dove was harmless.

So I began to think about the meaning of the dove.  Afterall, two turtle doves had the number two spot in the song The Twelve Days of Christmas.  And there is no one bird mentioned more often than the dove in the Bible…..flying back to Noah’s ark with a green leaf from an olive tree, a pair offered in sacrifice by Mary at her purification, one seen resting upon Christ at the time of His baptism, and so noted in the Song of Solomon as ‘the time of the singing of birds is come and the voice of the dove is heard in our land’.

During this Christmas season, my prayer is that each of us strive to become symbols of love, friendship and devotion to one another as exemplified by a dove…peaceful, gentle, harmless, caring, devoted, and loving everyone always.  Maybe then as the New Year gets underway, whomever is seen in a flock with us, their differences won’t matter any more and there will finally be Peace on Earth!  And then, just maybe the voice of the dove will be heard in our land.



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Gramma Golden

Gramma Golden