Symbiotic and Self-Sacrificing

Today I decided to toss around

A couple of big words.

More accurately,

I decided to toss around

A couple of big concepts.

I thought of the egrets and storks

That stand on the backs of hippos.

It is most definitely

A symbiotic relationship.

The birds remove parasites

From the hippos.

In exchange,

These massive creatures

Serve as perches

From which the birds

Can fish.

They work well together.

The killdeer also came to mind.

The parents are probably most famous

For faking injury

To distract predators

From their young.

While the killdeer protects

Its own,

There are other species

Who raise the hatchlings

Of “brood parasites”.

Birds like the cuckoo

Lay their eggs

Among colonies of birds

Of different species.

I, too, am like these creatures.

I can never be

Fully independent.

I must always seek

To do my part

And rely on others

When appropriate.


I must sacrifice

My own needs and desires

For the well-being of others.

In this world,

I must acknowledge

My responsibility to

And my dependence on


My existence must be

Both Symbiotic and Self-Sacrificing.

But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together (1 Corinthians 12:24-26, ESV).


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