Cup & Sparrow

My mornings usually involve sipping a cup of coffee or tea and observing the birds gathered around the backyard feeder.

Watching my winged visitors reminds me of Jesus Christ’s illustration using sparrows to point out God’s compassionate care for his creation (Luke 12:6). Even though life can be unpredictable and uncertain, it is comforting to know that nothing escapes the heavenly Father’s attention or falls outside his purpose and plan. It is especially true, said Jesus, for all who rest in God’s promises. If we trust him, we truly have nothing to fear. What a wonderful truth to ponder as you start your day!

A wise man once said, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1). As we think about life and navigate through it, it is good to remember that everything is really in God’s hands, and there is a proper time for it all. We are here for a reason, and it helps to have people who understand this and care enough to point us in the right direction.

That is where the idea for Cup & Sparrow began. I wanted to encourage others as we experience life “under heaven” together. And that starts by trusting God’s promises, which have their fullness in his grace through our faith in Christ his perfect Son. Creation and the Bible have convinced me that everything ultimately finds its purpose in him (Col. 1:15-20), even the most common things of our daily life. I imagined two friends enjoying a nice cup, watching the birds, and talking about life from that perspective.

That said, I invite you to join me. There will be original photos of the creation to inspire you, as well as biblical truth and thoughts about God to consider. Of course, my shameless affection for birds and the warm beverages that fill my morning cup will always be a topic.

I hope you can visit often!

Grace and peace,

Rick ☕️

Richard (Rick) E. Clayton, Jr. is an ordained minister and native of Stanly County, NC, where he’s filled various pastoral roles in local churches for over twenty-five years. He and his wife, Donna, have three adult children and currently reside in Richfield, NC. They’re both active members of Second Street Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Albemarle, NC, where Rick serves as an elder. Rick also writes for, manages Long Creek Inn, and is available as a guest speaker in area churches.