I was driving home the other day and was listening to the song “Lost in the Wilderness” from the musical Children of Eden. In the song Cain expresses to Abel his loss of faith in God because they are in the wilderness, not the garden. As I pulled into my driveway Cain sang, “Don’t you ever watch the eagle fly to the sun and wonder how he got to be so free?”
At that moment, perched on the wall in front of me, was a small sparrow. It was just standing there looking around, as if it were taking in the beauty of the day. The bird was not rushing off somewhere. For a couple of minutes it just stood there, and I sat in my car just staring at it. Like the eagle in the song lyrics, the sparrow seemed quite free. This moment for me was what I’m calling a “God wink.” Those are moments we feel touched by God in a unique and unexpected way—as if God were winking at us.
“Not one sparrow is forgotten by God,” I recalled from Luke’s Gospel. This reminded me that God deeply loves all animals—even that very sparrow on the wall—just as God loves me. And God gives all creatures freedom, even in what seems like the “wilderness” of the day-to-day. It’s easy to forget that, which is why a God wink was the perfect in-my-face reminder! The meaning I got from the song seemed uncannily timed with the sparrow sighting.
For all the focus I put on finding God in all things, I sometimes forget that God can find me. God winks are little, sometimes humorous, reminders that God wants to tap me on the shoulder and say, “Hey, I’m still here! Don’t forget me!”
When have you experienced a God wink?