The story of the yellow canary is a sad story for sure, but that is not the lesson of it.
Allowing myself the feeling of it, and all that it involved taught me much.
This little yellow bird was free. He didn't know it would be short lived.
He just flew! He had survival skills given to him by a God he did not worship or even knew existed. He hung around with "real" free birds. He became one of them. That winter was particulary bitter and ladden with snow. I am sure many "free" birds didn't make it. But they lived until they couldn't anymore. And this little yellow bird captured my heart. I eagerly sought him everyday. I worried about him. I cared for him. I prayed for him. He was only a bird...but he was a free bird for the rest of his life. I praise his summer of freedom. How better it was... than more years trapped in a caged...alone,with none of his kind. Now he was free.
Sure it broke my heart to see him huddled in the tree.It broke my heart to see the the mourning dove also and the purple finches. But it always breaks my heart to see how animals have to survive. That winter I didn't think my ferral cat,Handsome, would make it.
These things only make my heart bigger. My capacity for loving is only increased by my feelings of compassion for these helpless creatures. I did and do what I can and sometimes even more than I can.
How do I know that he, my little yellow bird, was not one of the least of these?
So suffering doesn't make me turn away, it makes me want to take action. Even if it is only to hit my knees.
Oh, and I always look for him in the garden...just in case.