The way a giraffe gets up. They roll over, get their back feet on the ground, kneel, then stand up....
Do you ever get discouraged with the trials of life? Do you ever feel sometimes that just when you get up from one trial, along comes another to kick you down again? Well be glad you were not born a baby giraffe. The amazing story of the birth of a giraffe brought some lessons home to me.
Did you know when mother giraffe gives birth the baby giraffe falls 10 feet from its mother’s womb and lands on its back? Within seconds it rolls over and tucks its legs under its body..
In his book, A View From the Zoo, Gary Richmond describes how a newborn giraffe learns its first lesson. The mother giraffe lowers her head long enough to take a quick look. Then she positions herself directly over her calf. She waits for about a minute, and then she does the most unreasonable thing. She swings her leg outward and kicks her baby. When it doesn’t get up, the violent process is repeated over and over again. As the baby calf grows tired, the mother kicks it again to stimulate its efforts. Finally, the calf stands for the first time on its own.
Then the mother giraffe does a remarkable thing. She kicks it off its feet again. Why? She wants it to remember how it got up. In the wild, baby giraffes must be able to get up as quickly as possible to stay with the herd, where there is safety. Lions, hyenas and leopards all enjoy eating young giraffes, and they’d get to, if the mother didn’t teach her calf to get up quickly and get with it.
So how well do we get back up when life knocks us down, as it does from time to time? We can feel like the baby giraffe, when the trials of life send us for a loop. I think of the many times that I have been knocked down and believed with my whole heart that I could never get up again. “Life is too hard,” “I’m tired,” I would think, and revert to self-pity, asking, “Why me, God?”
Struggles and adversity are good for us
So keep getting up when you are knocked down! Keep struggling through the tight, difficult spots! Remember the baby giraffe. Adversity doesn’t make you weak, adversity is there to make you strong.