Are Those Claws Sharp? (Guest Post)

Guest Post: Dan Ainsworth from Mississippi is a bi-vocational ordained Baptist preacher and outdoorsman. He applies his love of nature with his passion to see lives changed. Dan blogs at If you want to be a Saturday contributor see my Contribute page for details and submission guidelines.

Are those claws sharp? That’s the most asked question about my hawks and owls that I fly. And YES!! They are sharp.

The claws, talons is a more correct word, are sharp enough that I must wear a long thick leather glove. Sharp talons are vital tools that these birds of prey use to snatch and hold prey, protect themselves, and perch on a tree limb. Talons and beaks must stay sharp! The beak and talons are critical tools that these birds of prey use for their survival.

Hawks have a way of sharpening their tools. It’s by continually using them. If you place a hawk in a pen, always giving it cut up meat (they don’t eat salads ya know!), their beaks will grow abnormally long. This would require a manual process called “coping” to file the beak down to where it would function.

My hawks must always be able to rip and tear their food.

How this applies to your life

What are the ‘tools’ that you must use on your spiritual journey?

I value my guidebook (the Bible) to keep me on path and provide spiritual food. To keep this tool sharp requires me to continually use it.

A new tool that I’m beginning to use more and more is my computer and the internet. Yes, even in my wilderness, the internet is becoming a more valuable tool to reach out and connect with you as well as a source of information.

If it’s on the internet it’s true right? I’ll admit sometimes there is a fear in me about all this information on the internet. But I shouldn’t fear this tool, instead I should use a sound mind and let this powerful technology be used for God’s Glory. My friend Derek Ouellette has been a great help with advice about social media and the internet.

I have no spirit of fear concerning those talons and beak. But I do realize the power that these tools give this Red tail hawk. (I’ll show you my scar from wearing too short a glove.)

For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and love, and of a sound mind. 2 Tim 1:7

Question: What tools do you use on your spiritual journey? How do you stay sharp? You can leave a comment by clicking here.