Posted by: karanoel | May 16, 2020

A place of rest

Audio version of this post:

When the chicks were still inside the house, I would sit on the hardwood floor by their oversized tupperware to watch them and, really, just to be with them. I didn’t hold them often because it didn’t seem like something they enjoyed, but would gently pet their fluffy bodies and talk to them. When I realized their desire to perch and lack of place to do it, I began to lay my arm down on their bedding, call “Here chicky, chicky, chickies!” to announce my availability and then hold still as a slew of birds happily perched on me, until my back ached and I had to move. Though I can’t really explain why, it was a sweet, quiet pleasure for me; a sense of connectedness.

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“Arm perch” in the tupperware

It didn’t take too long for the chicks to start growing feathers, find a perch on the tupperware’s top edge and then explore the terrain beyond. With little desire to have 14 chickens wandering around our house, we moved them (and their heat lamp) to the coop John worked so hard to build. Compared to the tupperware, it was a chicken’s paradise, with room to run and perches to be found. But I missed them. So I would open the coop door, sit on the concrete and call to them, “Here chicky, chicky, chickies!” to let them know that though things had changed, I was still there. A portion of them would come running in response to my call and at least a few would perch on my hand or arm, or maybe my knee, and rest for a while.

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A visit from Angel

But then they realized that open door led to a world beyond. At first it was just a few particularly bold ones that ventured out but then, as is usually the case, many more followed. They were growing and getting faster, so Chase and I were finding it hard to wrangle them all back into the coop. We’d deliver one as two more found their freedom. That couldn’t continue, I realized, but I would miss them. So I started to go inside the coop, close the door and get settled on the ground of those humble surroundings as they seemed only vaguely aware of my presence and then call “Here chicky, chicky, chickies!” It took only a moment before at least one if not a few flew to perch on me, sometimes falling asleep in the warmth of my hand.

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Nighttime coop hangout

This is where our routine stands. I don’t know how long it will last but it has been such a restful pleasure. I’m not an “animal person” but these ones are mine and I love them. I don’t care that they aren’t cute like they once were as they continue their awkward transformation from chicks to chickens. I don’t care that they have nothing to give me except perhaps some distant possibility of eggs. I don’t care that sometimes they scratch me or even occasionally poop on me. I don’t care that in order to be with them, I have to sit in discomfort on the filthy floor of a chicken coop. I just want to be with them.

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Mother’s Day greeting

While reflecting on this very bizarre and unexpected reality for which John has playfully deemed me ‘chicken lady,’ I understood something about the Lord. He loves to be with us. He yearns to be with us. He doesn’t care if we are cleaned up and presentable or look the part of someone lovable. He doesn’t care if we have nothing to give Him back for His care and affection. He is willing to be hurt by us and crapped on by us. He thinks nothing of entering the most humble, even filthy, places if it means He can be in our company. It only takes a glimpse of a King born in a stable to see this is true. And I think if we quiet our hearts, we will come to realize He is calling us, “Here, children, here!;” that He has been calling us all along, letting us know that He is here with us, that He is available for us. Not to entrap us, but to be a place of rest; a place of warmth and familiarity. That we would know we are loved simply because we are His. 

“…how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings…” Matt 23:37

 


Responses

  1. So beautiful. ❤️ So soothing to my soul. 💫

    • Thank you Tara! That blesses my heart ❤️


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