He counted the cost. He considered the result well worth the unpleasantness, the discomfort and the danger.
John James Audubon (1785-1851) was a French-American ornithologist, naturalist, and painter, most famous for his collection of paintings of birds. His precision was such that his books are still used today as field guides and resources.
John Audubon practiced great self-mastery in order to learn all he could about birds. A colleague said of him “Mr. Audubon is the most enthusiastic and indefatigable man I ever knew. He was never dispirited by heat, fatigue, or bad luck.”
To study nighthawks, he discounted his physical comforts as nothing. He rose at midnight night after night, to go into the swamps to study nighthawks in their natural environment. He crouched motionless in the dark and fog, hoping to discover just one more fact about the species. One summer he stood almost to his neck in smelly, stagnant water, scarcely breathing, while poisonous water moccasin snakes swam past, in order to observe a shy water bird.
It certainly wasn’t pleasant or comfortable, but when questioned by a reporter, he simply said, “But what of that? I HAVE THE PICTURE!!!”
John Audubon endured all these things and much more
for the sake of a picture of a bird.
# What “comforts” am I willing to give up; what “unpleasantness” am I willing to endure in order to be the hands and feet and voice and love of Christ to the people I meet?
# What time am I willing to spend in the service of the King of kings?
Oh use me Lord: use even me,
Just as Thou wilt, and when and where;
Until Thy blessed face I see;
Thy rest, Thy joy, Thy glory share!