Blooming Where I’m Planted: Why I’m Staying in Cambridge, Not Moving to the City, And Shamelessly Surrounding Myself With Birds

The timid prayer warrior wore socks with sandals and disclaimed her odd vision of birds while praying for the Sunday service.  ‘There’s someone here who feels like a bird with a broken wing. God wants you to know that he sees you. He’s mindful of the birds.”

And I, a lonely visitor, cried hard and quiet in the audience; I was that bird. I felt like we were flying towards a bright horizon and now, we’re grounded. Shot down by circumstance and improbabilities. With broken wings and broken dreams, I was desperately seeking God in this “in between” space after our church plant and before the “next big thing for God” we’re called to do.





“Just be”. I sensed when I went back for prayer. “Just be.”


So I went home and researched “grounded birds” and broken wings. Did you know that when a bird’s wing is broken, shortly after the initial break the Rescuer is advised to hold wrap the bird up and hold her close to His body? The warmth and the closeness comforts the scared, injured, confused bird. The next suggestion I found was that every bird will experience a season of “grounding”. Even though it’s in her nature to attempt flight, the Rescuer knows she’s not ready, so He grounds her until her wing is restored.


And I sensed these words again, “Just be. I’m mindful of the birds.”


So, for now, I’m giving up my dream of moving into the city. That doesn’t mean I don’t love the city. That doesn’t mean I don’t seek her Shalom. And that doesn’t mean I don’t have hope. Just right now, I’m a little broken. I can’t quite handle the flight into her storm. I need to be grounded. I need to just be and let Him be mindful of me.


After this acceptance, I wrote this Facebook Status.

Screen shot 2014-07-17 at 10.30.57 PM




Then, I looked around my kitchen—my public housing, fairly drab kitchen and decided, to make beauty right now and bloom where we’re planted. Thanks to the Nester and her book, “The Nesting Place” I was inspired to make this beautiful gallery wall in my kitchen. I’m surrounding myself with birds to remind myself that although I’m broken—I’m still loved.  Although I’m grounded—I’m safe.  Although I’m small—my Rescuer sees me.



So, for the next couple of years, we’re here in Cambridge. Still living in public housing. Miles away from the urban community I romanticized as my mission field. Maybe God’s just asking me to be in still and nourished in his field of dreams.


At the end of our family vacation we decided to go to a game and showing of “Field of Dreams” at Fenway. For me it was a to celebration of our time here and a commitment to listen to the still small voice to build greatness and seek beauty right in my back yard.



I’m already sensing those dreams he might be dreaming when I’m ready to fly once again.


There’s a young mama here who wants to start an enrichment program on Thursday night for the kids in our development. Maybe I can help her dream.


There’s a church nearby teaching cooking classes to the kids in a housing development nearby…maybe I can learn from them.


The school that my kids go to right down the street needs an artistic mom to help with the talent show next year and my son’s middle school needs a parent liaison. Maybe I can partner with other parents to advocate for our kids education.



Cambridge isn’t Roxbury where I pictured our church plant; it surely isn’t Dorchester where my husband works with proven risk teenagers. Cambridge isn’t New Orleans where I cut my teeth on urban ministry—but it’s home. It’s where this broken bird is grounded. It’s where God is asking me to bloom.

Blooming Where I’m Planting and Grounded with my Rescuer,





Today’ I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker, Five Minute Friday.  Click the picture and give us your best, unedited, straight-from-the-heart words on “Bloom”.


7 thoughts on “Blooming Where I’m Planted: Why I’m Staying in Cambridge, Not Moving to the City, And Shamelessly Surrounding Myself With Birds

  1. Oh, I love your from-the-heart words! Big tears and big hugs! I am so familiar with the waiting for dreams and the dreaming while I wait. But we are seen! We are, in all the ways we need to be, by the One who cares the most for every detail. Thank you for that reminder. May that peace settle our fluttering hearts, and may those wounded wings find restoration. Much love!

  2. Absolutely beautiful words and thoughts Osheta! That imagery of the Rescuer holding the bird so close….**goose bumps** and tears of a grateful child swell in my eyelids.

    I’ve been learning that there is not necessarily any “mission” to be on, other than the mission to “just be”. No separate place, time, or circumstance magically activates our lives given as worship. Father is proudly gushing over our every step, lovingly celebrating our most insignificant achievements.

    Can you hear Him singing over us? “Well pleased…well pleased…well pleased…with you I am well pleased”

  3. This is a really good word. I think we hear a lot of the “go and do,” “be bold,” and “chase your dreams” cheers. Those are also good, but it makes it hard to tell sometimes if God may be saying, “wait, be patient, stay here.” I have been wondering if God is asking me to stay in a situation that doesn’t make as much “logical” sense as the alternative (for my own plans at least!), but is still good. Thanks for the encouragement!

  4. I read your article about the Year of the Ugly Cry and then this article and can’t tell you how much my heart resounds with both. I was just writing this morning about Psalm 102:7 because I feel describes 2013 perfectly for me: “I lie awake: I am like a lonely sparrow on the housetop.” Not one sparrow falls to the ground without his knowing it…and our he cares for us even more than sparrows!
    Thank you for sharing, Osheta!

  5. God has me in a season of waiting… And I have to constantly remind myself of his words to me, that tell my passions to wait. I have realized I have missed many opportunities for growth as I wait for ‘my gifts’ to be fully used. Now I am committed to the principle that his will is the best place for me right now, not just the best for for the kingdom. Only he knows how I need to grow in reorder to be a beautiful and effective nostrum end in his hand. Thank you for sharing your analogy and beautiful words.

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