The Sparrow and the Red Car

A few days back, I was sitting in my car in the County Jail parking lot – no not because I am a resident  – but because I teach inmates most afternoons.  So, I am sitting there next to this incredibly beautiful, dark red, brand new Infinity automobile.  Have to admit I was violating my own teachings about joy in the Present Moment to  “wanting what we don’t have.”  Sure was a beautiful car, and my favorite color to boot.  Having left the Present Moment, for a moment, I was zooming down the highway in this wonderful car. It was a warm summer day, windows open, wind in my hair, etc., etc., etc.

So sitting in my not so new Hyundai, staring at this wonderful auto next to me, I was lost in some time I am sure didn’t exist. Suddenly, I was shocked back to reality, sanity, and what matters most.  From behind this incredible car’s front tire, out hopped a unusually small sparrow.  It perched on the edge of the curb with it tiny beak a fraction away from the front tire of the huge machine I had just been lusting after.

Then I came back to the Present Moment. It hit me with some force that the life within the sparrow, was life, eternal life, profound life. Compared to the dead machine, it was everything. How suddenly I loved this little bird.  I wanted to hold it, and pet, and tell it what a wonderful creature it was. But I wouldn’t touch it, nor ever see it again.  Yet with great force, this little God creation  reminded me, in the space of one of it’s heartbeats, what was important. I didn’t need anything more than I had in the Present Moment to be incredibly, wonderfully happy.