|Warning: Danger (Read Proverbs 4:13-21)
Michael looked up at the bright red bird in the tree. The brilliant crest on top of the cardinal's head bobbed as the bird made nervous, short chirps. Nearby, another bird was making the same warning noise while jumping from branch to branch. This bird's feathers were not so bright, but on its head was the same crest. The baby cardinals were learning to fly, and they were perched on different branches. Their parents knew the babies couldn't fly well enough to escape danger, so they were warning them to stay in the tree.
Just then, Michael felt something soft rubbing against his legs. He looked down and saw his cat, Fluffy, who had just walked out of the bushes. Michael hadnít seen her before, but the parent birds knew the cat was there. Now the babies were safely out of reach because they had obeyed their parents' warning.
Picking up Fluffy, Michael carried her into the house. "You can't have those pretty birds," he told her. "You'll have to stay inside until the baby birds learn to fly well."
When Dad came home from work, Michael told him all abut the cardinals. Dad smiled and put his arm around Michael's shoulder as they walked in the yard. "That's a beautiful picture of how God helps us," Dad said. "Those baby birds probably didn't see Fluffy at allóor maybe they would have liked a closer look, but they were warned to stay away. God warns us of danger, too. Some times we don't see anything wrong with certain activities. We may even wish we could try them. But God has told us to stay away from things like lying, stealing, bad friends, and mean actions. God knows these things hurt us as well as others."
Michael looked up at his dad. "And the babies were safe because they listened to their parents and obeyed," he said.
Right," said Dad. "And we'll be safe if we listen to God and obey him."