To Inspire Rather Than To Require

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Guest post by Denielle Tamayo

In this day after my wife's birthday, I re-publish here one of her earliest writings in our former blog, Plain Haven. This one was from eight years ago.

Hope you all have a great Sunday! God bless, everyone!

To Inspire Rather Than to Require

My daughter and I were enjoying our usual morning walk in our lawn when we noticed a Maya bird hopping a few feet from us.

This is common event that’s why we armed ourselves with bits of pandesal (local salted bread) to try to make the bird stay longer.

With pieces of bread in her hands, Ryah tried walking towards it with a gesture that she was aiming to catch it. But when she was about two feet away the bird flew to the nearest branch out of reach.

I’m sure my daughter meant no harm and just wanted to feed the bird. But I also know that it was the bird’s nature to fly away when there’s assumed danger.

I walked towards Ryah and taught her to just drop the bread on the ground, then took her to sit with me several feet away and waited.

A few minutes passed and we saw a couple of birds hopping cautiously near our pile of bread bits.

What we learned? We cannot require a bird to eat our bits of bread by catching it and shoving food between its beaks. 

However, we can inspire the bird by simply placing the bread on the ground, taking a few steps back and waiting… with much hope.

This situation is very similar to any given relationship (husband-wife, parent-daughter, friend-friend, leader-follower, teacher-student,etc.).

Requiring love, intimacy, trust, respect, or loyalty is futile. But it can be inspired.