It happened every morning for the last five days. Just as the sun was beginning to rise a rooster began to crow nearby. At first, I was annoyed, then I got used to it and eventually I looked forward to it. Visiting the West Indies again, I was reminded how this sound is a part of the everyday life of anyone living in proximity to roosters and that seems to be most people on these islands. Why use an alarm clock when God provided one in his own creation? As I began each day with this familiar sound, I became curious about why roosters crow in the first place. Why don’t cats, dogs or other animals get up first thing in the morning and create a cacophony of their own. In doing some basic research, it turns out that there is a simple answer – God made them that way. Their circadian rhythms are so attuned to nature that they can’t help but anticipate the dawn and announce it to everyone.
Each and every day roosters do this one thing and do it very well. They may be busy doing other things during the rest of the day and night as they prance around the yard with their tail feathers in the air, but without fail, they will crow every morning. It is almost like God is reminding us of that verse that says if we don’t praise him the rocks and stones will cry out. It’s not quite like hearing a rock sing, but listening to a rooster crow is a startling experience nearly every time. Built into nature, God has a chorus of roosters all over the world reminding us that the day is coming, God is faithful and the sun will shine again. No matter the weather, these roosters keep crowing. It can be raining or nasty outside and they remind us that it is still daytime and we need to be about our father’s business. They are ultimately faithful to one of the key purposes for which God made them.
Visiting our team this week, I needed a reminder of God’s faithfulness. After sixty years of dedicated service, our local bookstore team on this bustling Caribbean island is facing major headwinds, some might even say hurricane force winds. Yet, as I met with them, I kept hearing the rooster crowing. Despite a lack of resources and with declining economic conditions all around, our dedicated team is listening to the still small voice of their heavenly father and not the lies of the devil. Just like Moses, they looked at what was in their hand and decided to do something with it. Even though there is very limited parking around our downtown store, a bus stop had recently been put in place several hundred yards from our front door. Dozens and dozens of people stream by on their way to and from work each day. With that in mind, the team set up a folding table out front and put some books and Bibles out for display. Not surprisingly, people who had never noticed the store as they hurried by now stop to look at what might be available. A few even go inside to see an even better selection.
As I get older, I am becoming more and more aware that God does not really care what we can accomplish for him. The truth is that He will accomplish His purposes with or without us. Just like He made the rooster to do one thing and to do it well, He cares about that in us first and foremost. We were made to worship Him and He desires our worship above everything else. My primary purpose on earth is to glorify Him and point people to His son, our savior. What I am learning these days is that my worship is in my work. They are not separate and distinct. As I do my work with excellence and integrity, I bring glory to the one who made me. What a joy to wake up every day and join the rooster in praising God as I and my CLC brothers and sisters open the doors to our stores one more time. Congrats to my CLC Barbados colleagues for 60 years of faithful service and may there be many more.