How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!
People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
When I was a young girl my aunt raised chickens. I loved to help her, often sitting in the coop with the hens, hand feeding them. So Scriptures about chickens hold special significance for me.
I am not alone in my interest in chickens. Chickens are one of the most studied and researched species. I recently learned some interesting facts about chicks and hens from an article posted on eXtension.org entitled, “Normal Behaviors of Chickens in Small and Backyard Poultry Flocks”:
- Chicks know their mother’s voice and can find her even when blindfolded. Hens will cluck in a certain way when danger is near. The chicks learn to run to her when they hear this sound.
- Similarly, if a chick expresses distress, as soon as the mother hen hears it, she will quickly come to check on the chick.
- Hens will shield chicks from heavy rain, intense heat, and extreme cold.
- A mother hen will aggressively defend her young against other birds (even other hens who approach her nest) and will bravely fight off formidable creatures such as cats and foxes to protect her offspring.
How often I have wanted to gather your children together
as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings,
but you wouldn't let me.
When Jesus likened himself to a hen, he painted a picture of a fierce defender and self-abasing shelter. Note the similarities:
Do you feel alone with your problems? Are you overwhelmed? Do you need comfort or a hiding place? Psalm 91:1 says, “Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.”
- Through His Word we can learn to recognize Jesus’ voice. In it He warns us of spiritual dangers and predators so we can recognize them and avoid them.
- Through prayer, we lift our voices to Jesus, who hears and takes action.
- When life pelts us with one thing after another, we can find rest and shelter in the arms of Jesus. He will not only help us shoulder our burdens, he will carry us.
- Jesus never leaves us to fend for ourselves. He is always with us, defending us against the fiery arrows thrown by both our fellow humans and by Satan.
Will you let Jesus gather you under His mighty wings?
©2014 Pamela D. Williams