Coco Calling No.167 - The Parrot that Published a Book
After ten months of hard work, I’ve finally published my book!
I’ve shed a great many feathers during the process and destroyed at least one keyboard with my beak. But I like to think that I’m living proof that if you’re doing something for God, then anything is possible. Never before has a parrot published his own book and had the copyright registered in his name under the Berne Convention. Parrots never do that sort of thing, -that is, unless God is involved with the project.
You see, God really wants to work through all of us in different ways, so that we make life better for one another and spread His wisdom. Even when we are imperfect and full of flaws. Over these last ten months, I’ve done my best to control my pride, my vanity and all of my self-interest to allow God’s spirit to come inside me and work its magic. And my new book is the result! It won’t make me rich because parrots don’t use money, so 100% of proceeds will be going to fund a new Outdoor Church that’s being set up here in North Devon.
Saint Francis of Assisi (a parrot hero) is once reported to have said:
“If God can work through me, he can work through anyone.”
(Saint Francis of Assisi: Patron Saint of Animals).
Saint Francis knew that God can use each one of us in a hundred different ways, so long as we allow Him to direct us in what we do. We can’t all be a Billy Graham, a Corrie ten Boon, a Mother Teresa or a Pope Francis. But you can still be the human that cares for your elderly relative; the volunteer that makes tea at the end of the service; the person that cleans the church or arranges the flowers; the good neighbour that helps out in a crisis; the nurse that goes the extra mile; the benefactor that helps a worthy cause; or the human that prays for the needs of others when so many forget to do so. But these things will often only happen after we’ve allowed the presence of God to come inside us. Corrie ten Boon knew all about this:
“You see, a potter can only mould the clay when it lies completely in his hand. It requires complete surrender.”
(Corrie ten Boon: Christian author and survivor of a Nazi concentration camp).
The problem for so many of us is that we become too focussed on the physical, tangible things in life. In my case, that can be my beautiful feathers, my supply of chillies, or finding a perch that elevates me to a higher level than all of the humans around me. But then I remember the words of Mother Teresa:
“If your heart is full of worldly things you cannot hear the voice of God.”
“He has made us for a purpose. He will fulfil it if we don’t put any obstacle in his way.”
(Mother Teresa: Roman Catholic nun who founded a mission hospital in Calcutta and who was beatified after her death in 1997).
A day never passes without God using ordinary individuals for His extraordinary plans. Each one of us has a role to play in those plans. The very same God that can make mighty trees grow out of tiny seeds.
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works.” (Ephesians 2:10a)
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” (Colossians 3:23)
About my book:
“The Random Thoughts of a Christian Parrot” is published in hardback, 176 pages in length, full colour throughout and featuring more than 100 photographs. The ISBN is 978-1-5272-9810-1 and copies cost £12.00. The book includes a Foreword written by the Bishop of Crediton plus a total of 83 reflections which can serve as your “parrot thought of the day.”
Copies are available from Amazon, some bookshops or direct from me! If ordering direct, please enclose a cheque for £12.00 made out to the “Oakmoor Group of Parishes” and send it to: Coco the Parrot, Parkstone, George Nympton Village, EX36 4JE, U.K. Postage and packing is free!
100% of proceeds will go towards funding the work of local North Devon parishes, and particularly a new Outdoor Church initiative located on the edge of Exmoor. My book will make a great Christmas present for friends and family!
This is what others have to say about my book:
“I grant you, a book by a feathered friend is novel, but with this parrot, faith finds its wings. It is intelligent, kind and spiritually perceptive – more than can be said for some religious functionaries. I wonder if dog collars come in parrot sizes?”
(Dave Tomlinson: Priest, author and broadcaster)
“The mix of humour, challenge, biblical text and photography along with the views of our perceptive parrot, make this book a unique reflection on our twenty-first century lives.”
(Right Reverend Jackie Searle: Bishop of Crediton)
“Sometimes human wisdom just isn’t enough. Standing or flying outside our messy, confusing, but glorious lives, Coco the parrot helps us to look afresh at the things that really matter and the ways we can re-connect with God’s love – so that we too can soar!”
(Giles King-Smith: Acting Archdeacon of Barnstaple)