The Rescue
Guideposts|February 2019
The Rescue

My dog, Charlie Bear, found the baby bird. I found healing.

B.J. Taylor

It was the day after I had knee surgery for a torn meniscus—the latest in a long line of things that had brought me pain. The doctor had urged me to walk on my leg, so I hobbled out the side door and headed to the backyard. Our dog, Charlie Bear, scooted out in front of me. He went straight to a spot on the sidewalk and put his nose down. “What is it, Charlie?” I asked.

A baby bird, maybe an inch and a half long. Gently, using just two fingers, I picked him up and put him in my palm. His tiny orange-and-black beak opened, and his chest moved.

I carried him carefully inside. “Look at this beautiful little bird,” I said to my husband.

“Where did you find him?” Roger asked me.

“Outside. Charlie saw him.” “Give him some bread,” Roger said.

The baby needed to be outside so his mama could find him. I set him on top of a plastic garbage can turned upside down, where he wouldn’t be stepped on, and left a little piece of bread in front of his beak. Does a baby bird eat bread? Probably not, but I wasn’t sure what else to do. I knew how to take care of dogs and cats, not birds. I looked around for his mama. There was no sign of her.

“God, please help this baby bird get better.” The prayer came like a breath, unbidden. I was surprised. I couldn’t remember the last time I’d talked to God.

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February 2019