Who Made the Ostrich Strange?

There is an ostrich reference in the Bible. It is in the book of Job and it comes from God’s response to Job.

A brief summary of the book of Job is Job is a righteous man. Satan asks to make a wager with God about Job. (Such an interesting part of the story.) Satan gets his wager so tragedy hits Job in every way possible yet he does not curse God. His friends gather around him asking him all sorts of questions while encouraging him to curse God. Job is miserable, confused, and finally speechless. Then out of a whirlwind God speaks to Job.

A whirlwind. A tornado. Can you imagine how scary that was? Moses got a burning bush. Sort of scary. Elijah was looking for something dramatic and got the still small voice. Reassuring. Job got the full-on scary tornado.

From that tornado God tells Job who God is. For four chapters (Job 38-41) God speaks from that tornado of many wondrous things. Including the ostrich.

Job 39:13-18
The ostrich flaps her wings grandly, but they are no match for the feathers of the stork.
She lays her eggs on top of the earth, letting them be warmed in the dust.
She doesn’t worry that a foot might crush them or a wild animal might destroy them.
She is harsh toward her young, as if they were not her own. She doesn’t care if they die.
For God has deprived her of wisdom. He has given her no understanding.
But whenever she jumps up to run, she passes the swiftest horse with its rider.

God points to the ostrich and says, “Explain this.”

The ostrich is a funny-looking bird. Grand yet foolish. Wise yet reckless. Harsh and uncaring. Why did God create an animal that leaves her eggs unprotected and then forgets where she put them?

Look at the ostrich and learn something brave. This bird lays its eggs and then seems to forget where she put them.

Similarly, it may seem that God has forgotten where he placed Job. And forgotten where you are right now.

Do you feel forgotten by God? Do you feel that God is harsh and uncaring?

But this is not so. The God who created the ostrich is the God who created Job. God does know where you are.

Though you feel lost right now; though you would welcome a tornado with God just so you know that God knows where you are; the ostrich was created. And that ostrich can run. One day you will run also.


All that you have been created for will make sense. It is as strange as it is beautiful.

Read also: My Proclamation of Faith (When My Life Does Not Make Sense)

(photo credit:  Pixabay.com)


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