Something about this sight pricked my spirit. Like the woodpecker, Christians aren’t meant to blend in. Blending in is ordinary, bland, nondescript. A multi-hued God deserves colorful, bold, blatant worship and loudly-proclaimed commitment to Him. Sure, it draws the enemy’s attention, but more importantly, it captures God’s attention. Since God sees the sparrow that falls, He certainly sees the woodpecker in his fearless attack on the tree trunk. In like manner, God sees we Christians’ blazing vulnerabilities, and He bears us up in His hands and imparts His strength to our weakness. We can “peck away” at unrighteousness, not because we wear the facade of perfection, but because our trust is in the one who is watching over us. We can fearlessly stand out against the norm for we aren’t relying on our own efforts to protect us from the enemy nor our own efforts to make an impact on this world. Our confidence is in the one whom we seek to glorify. Our methods, oft- labeled unusual or fanatical, are bold expressions of our commitment to Christ and our vibrant love for Him. We are not ashamed to be His, even if it separates us from the crowd.
Being set apart UNTO JESUS is worth it. When we take a stand for Him, He also takes a stand for us. When we thump our chests, roll our eyes, give our chins a saucy jut and proudly say, “I’m His!” Jesus snaps a circle in the air and with an Uncle Sam double-point proclaims in His sing-song, hipster voice, “My ffrrriihheeeend, I’m yours!!"
There are times our Christianity requires effort--just like the woodpecker must grip the side of the tree and, while hanging on for dear life, hammer away at the bark. But there’s a reward for the labor. We “labor not in vain”; we “abound in the work of the Lord.” For that diligent red-headed bird, there’s a bug in the hollow tree where he has been tapping away. Similarly, the Christian who perseveres receives joy unspeakable, peace unexplainable, and blessings untold. Like the woodpecker, Christians see the unseen, go after it, and enjoy a feast while the world perches in uninspired mediocrity and experiences famine. Our flagrant peculiarities connect us to a life source the world does not understand. Oh, but if they did, they’d want to be a red-headed-woodpecker Christian, too!
> Bake a plate of cookies for a neighbor. Include a church invitation with it. Deliver it with a smile.
> Go for a prayer walk around your neighborhood.
> Spend time with an elderly person in the nursing home
> Touch those who are dirty, smelly, and ugly
> Create care packets in ziplock bags and deliver them to the homeless.
> Invite a neighborhood child or two over for games and icecream
> Read your Bible (gasp) even in public
> Be modest in dress, manner, and behavior
> Vote for Christian leaders
> Say "God bless you," "Merry Christmas," and "Thank you, Jesus"
> Offer to pray for someone who has shared a need. Pray with them then or later--just pray.
> Speak well of others.