As I stood at the sink cutting up some vegetables, I looked out the kitchen window and noticed the leaves on a large bush behind our mulberry tree sway with a sudden, wide movement. The foliage parted as if stirred by a swift gust of wind. And then I saw it--a large hawk, swooping in, ready to descend upon a wren house full of baby wrens.
In an instant, I knew what was happening and without thinking I began to whoop and holler. I ran to the large window that looks out on our garden and began to bang. My sudden and unrestrained action created enough alarm that the hawk gave up his hunt and flew away.
I chuckled at myself, amused by my barbarian reaction to this predator. At the same time, I was so glad that I was there at that very moment and followed my instincts. I felt protective of those sweet little babies. For a couple weeks, I had enjoyed their chatter and been amazed by their parents unrelenting attention to feed them.
My response came from my natural instinct to protect. I didn't think first and then act. I merely did what came to me--and it worked! My yelping and banging warded off a predator and saved some baby birds. The same instinctual reaction, however, can protect me and you from much more serious danger.
Not long ago, I did some research for a presentation on how to protect yourself from predators. I learned four important lessons, using the acrostic GIFT:
G: When facing a situation where you may be in danger, you have a gift of intuition. Learn to use it.
I: Pay attention to your initial instincts and follow them.
F: Your feelings often tell you whether you can trust a person or situation. Notice them.
T: Trust yourself; don't trust someone you don't really know.
I hope this story and this GIFT will help you remember to follow your instincts and protect what is near and dear to you!