When we survey our surroundings, I believe it is clear we live in a neat world. There are so many natural wonders that can fill us with awe. Simply put, our world is finely-tuned for life. Creation itself points towards a creator.
God’s truth is often revealed to us in the wonders of creation. God created an orderly universe and we can see God’s “fingerprint” in nature. Also, this is not just limited to sunsets, big mountains, or far-off galaxies in the night sky. This absolutely includes animals, too.
I think there are some very insightful examples of God-given character qualities in the animal kingdom.
Sheep were the main illustration in my preaching yesterday. Despite their helplessness and unintelligence, we can learn quite a bit of how they act and relate it to our lives as disciples. We too are needy and not always smart. We need to know the voice of our “shepherd” and to follow God daily!
In addition to sheep, here are some other interesting examples of how animals can teach us about Godly character…
We must always use God’s resources to the best of our ability, managing them wisely to give to others, and also planning for the future.
Koalas are very resourceful kinds of creatures. Koalas only eat eucalyptus leaves, which contain very little nutrients. They must conserve every bit of energy, so they move slowly and often nap most of the day. This is how they survive in the Australian wild. It can be very dry, so it is remarkable that koalas can even survive for years in such inhospitable environments!
Sea otters are also resourceful. Oftentimes they will dive to the ocean floor and find the perfect rock at the bottom of the ocean to use to crack open oysters. They hold this rock under a skin flap near their arms for future use. Otters will also protect their young and teach them how to swim so they can feed themselves, too.
God calls us to adapt to our surroundings, whether that be evangelizing to other people, or caring for loved ones during life’s challenging seasons.
Hummingbirds are the epitome of flexibility as they flap their wings extremely fast and are able to stay in the same position, move up, down, left, right, forward, or backward. They are able to fly right up to food sources that other birds have no chance of reaching.
Octopuses are flexible in more ways than one. They can contort their bodies to fit into very small spaces or squeeze through small cracks to hide from predators. Another flexible quality is that many can change colors. If they are at the bottom of a grey sea floor, they can turn grey and even texture themselves. If they are by a garden of coral and plants, they can match to look like just another rock in the sea with perfect camouflage.
There are almost too many examples to name, since so many animals will care for their young! One final example of “lessons from the animal kingdom” is a classic… the loyal dog.
Here’s a song by Wendy Francisco to illustrate: