This bird is rather camera shy (hence the awful picture) but if you look closely you can see him. He showed up for the first time the day we came home from the hospital after losing Maddox. I vividly remember that day. It was such a beautiful, sunny day and this same bird was there well past sunset. I had never seen that before…. I’ve always heard that Cardinals are your loved ones visiting you and I knew God did this on purpose. Since that day, this bird has been visiting every single day. Morning, noon and night – without fail. He now has a lady friend who visits with him and they have claimed our home as their territory, fiercely defending it from the unwelcome birds.

To me, this guy is a living symbol of hope. He often shows up in times of struggle and always puts a smile on my face. When I see him I’m reminded that all will be alright, and my heart smiles knowing that it’s our special ‘Hello’ from Maddox. It encourages me to continue to find hope in all things, even something as ordinary as a beautiful bird like this one. God’s encouragement is everywhere, we just have to keep our eyes, minds and hearts open so we receive it.


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