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Breakfast at Tiffany's: Like the eagles

Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s. Psalm 103:5


Confession time. I struggle with a propensity toward binging. Whether it be my favorite snack or my favorite show, when I enjoy something, I have a difficult time doing it in moderation. While those things may give my brain an invigorating, short-lived burst of serotonin, their lack of substance rarely satiates my appetite and almost always leaves me with a stomachache or headache. When I was younger, I could basically eat whatever I wanted and stay skinny while maintaining a near perfect bill of health or stay up all night watching Netflix documentaries and still have the energy to get through the next day. However, as I get older, the ways that those bad choices have wreaked havoc on my physical, mental and even spiritual health cry out with the sound of aches and pains, brain fog, and the incessant need to take naps.

It's true that our bodies were not made to last forever, but God has also created ways to keep our body, mind and soul youthful and satisfied. It’s so simple, yet so difficult in this modern world that offers innumerable pleasures for very little effort. Regardless, Scripture tells us that God satisfies us with good things so that our youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

How does an eagle renew its youth? Through a process of shedding old feathers called molting. Molting is a demanding process, requiring the harmonious synchronization of physiological, hormonal and neurological processes. Additionally, the growth of new feathers requires a sufficient nutrient intake. Starting from the head and moving in stages to the tail, molting can take three-four years to complete. This systematic loss and regrowth of feathers ensures that the eagle can continue to successfully fly, find food, hide from predators, and warm its young.[i] When the eagle is renewed after molting, the result is a fowl so majestic and full of feathers that it resembles the “full freshness of renovated youth.”[ii]

With that knowledge, you get a much clearer picture of what the psalmist meant. 2 Peter 1:3 says that God has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of Christ. He provides everything we need to not only thrive, but to feel satisfaction in every aspect of our lives—from the physical to the spiritual. But that youthfulness of body and spirit doesn’t come without a rigorous shedding process. Just as the eagle’s molting and regrowth begins at its head, so must our renewal begin in our minds. This can’t happen if we constantly fill our minds with junk. Junk never satisfies and it doesn’t provide the “nutrients” needed for regeneration. Paul pleaded with the Romans, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Romans 12:1-2, emphasis added).

Why would we choose to stay on our spiritual couches watching TV and growing fat on ice cream and Doritos when God has saved us a place at his banqueting table? Why would we want to stay grounded—tormented by the predatory enemy of our souls—when God says we can soar above and rest in safety?

Human nature tends toward what feels easy. We shy away from processes and gravitate toward quick fixes. We are a fast-food, instant-streaming, comfort-seeking generation. But then there are nonconformists….“They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to fly.

[i], 2023. “Life History or Annual Cycle”

[ii] Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset, and David Brown, Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible, vol. 1 (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997), 586.


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