July 13, 2020

Yesterday, right before the worship service, Shannon called, asking for the phone number of a cowboy.  I knew this wasn’t a good sign but I didn’t have time to ask what was going on.  So I gave her the number and walked into the sanctuary to start the live stream of our worship service.   After the worship service ended, I found out what had happened.

We have a giant heifer that was born on July 4, 2018.  We named her Sparkler.  She is a cross between  Brahman and Brangus cows, which means she is a beautiful, muscled monster.

Sparkler had gone into labor and was not cooperating.  The calf needed to be pulled but Sparkler would not go into a pen.  This is where the cowboys came in.

Sparkler blew through two fences and was headed for the hills.  It was not good.  By the time it was all said and done, Dee and three other cowboys were needed to get this insane heifer under control.  One of them roped Sparkler off a horse named Cubby, while the others tied her legs and pulled the calf.  It was a beautiful little girl.

Sadly, Sparkler licked her baby once, and then walked away.  She never returned.  She rejected her baby.

Knowing the baby had to eat, Shannon and I fed her some colostrum.  She was very hungry.

I told Shannon I wanted to name our new baby Wombat or Shnerbert.   Shannon named her Mary.

Sparkler and the other cows were hiding from the blazing sun under some trees near the barn.  I picked up Mary and carried her to the trees.  I set her down in the midst of the cows, hoping her mother would bond with her.  Mary instantly fell asleep.  And while all the other cows came over to introduce themselves, Sparkler never came close.

I spent the entire day, sitting in the gator, in 104 degree heat, watching to make sure Mary was alright.

In the evening, the cows got up and walked to the tank for water, leaving Mary alone.

 It was done.  Mary had been completely rejected by her mother.  I carried Mary back to the barn and we bottle fed her more colostrum.  Then she fell asleep.

While Mary will have to adjust to the fact that she has a mother who doesn’t want her, she won’t understand the big picture.  Even though she may feel alone, she’s not.  Shannon and I are there for her.  In fact, as soon as I finish this devotional, I am going down to the barn to feed Mary breakfast.  She has us.  I think it’s the same with God.

There may be times in your life when you may feel completely rejected and alone.  You aren’t.  God’s promise is very clear:  “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand.”  (Isaiah 41:10)

You will never be alone.  God loves you that much.

Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, help me always remember that you are with me in good times and bad.  In the midst of the storms of life, let me feel your presence and peace.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

While Mary’s life will not be as easy as it could have been, she’s got us.  She’s in good hands.  So are you.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.
Tom Robbins