“Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings.” Psalm 17:8 (ESV)
Baby birds are rather homely looking at first. They are featherless and helpless. They depend completely on their parents to protect them and feed them. Without their mother’s care, they are defenseless. The mother bird doesn’t care that they are ugly and demanding creatures. She instinctively knows that they will grow into beautiful birds and what she must to do to keep them safe. They are indeed the apple of her eye and under her wings they will grow and be kept safe.
The psalmist in Psalm 17 pleads to God asking to be the apple of His eye and be kept safe under the shadow of His wings. I can relate to this cry. When I feel the ugliest, I long to feel like I’m the apple of God’s eye. When I feel abandoned by the world, it’s nice to know that God’s love is steadfast and faithful. And when I feel the most vulnerable, I want to feel the protection of God’s wings above me. His strong arm protecting me.
I might be an “ugly little bird,” but I’m also the apple of God’s eye and in the shadow of his wings I can find safety. He wondrously shows his steadfast love for all his “little birds.” And for that reason, I will daily rejoice.