The Hawk in the Chicken Coop
1Pe 5:8 "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:"
When I was growing up my family kept many different kinds of animals, some of them being chickens. My dad, though not a builder by trade, could make anything out of wood and it always turned out beautiful. The chicken coop he designed and built was not just any ordinary coop, but had a front room with a place to store the chicken feed and a handy wooden nesting box that you could unlatch and take out the eggs without the chickens attacking you inside. There was plenty of room for all the chickens, wooden bars for roosting, and a little door in the corner where they could go outside into the penned-in yard and scratch in the dirt. In my opinion, it was an ideal place for a chicken to live and they seemed quite happy.
I still remember the afternoon when my friend and I were running around outside, playing games that little kids play, and we decided to go down and visit the chickens. We skipped down the wooden stairs and followed the cedar trail that led to the coop and hurried around to see the chickens pecking outside in the pen. We both stopped in shock as we saw a very large bird in the middle, eating a chicken that lay dead with a big hole in her back. Another pitiful chicken ran around with a large wound on her back.
I screamed and so did my buddy. The hawk was obviously taken by surprise because he immediately stopped pecking at his meal and ran to the edge of the mesh wire. It was as if he did not remember how to get out, or maybe he needed more room to take off with his wide wingspan, but whatever the reason, he could not figure out how to fly out. We fled in horror, screaming bloody murder as we ran back up the trail, calling my mother and brother to come see the horrible mess. Thinking something terrible had happened to me, my mother and brother came out with panicked looks on their faces and we led them back down to view the awful scene.
My brother had in mind to get his BB gun and shoot the scared hawk, still trying to find a way to get out of the pen by banging on the wire. My friend's mother had arrived to pick him up by that point and she had come down to see what the commotion was all about. The hawk eventually found his way out of the pen and flew away, leaving us wondering what to do about the chicken that was still alive, but had a gaping hole in her back. We ended up putting her in the little room in the first part of the coop, because we knew the other chickens would never leave her alone and would peck at her endlessly until she died. Settled in her own quiet corner, the chicken was able to rest and recuperate from her tramatic experience.
The chicken did heal, though she was always a little skittish after that. My dad also decided it was time to build a mesh roof over the outside pen so the events of the day would not occurr again.
Though a hawk is not a lion, it is still an animal that searches for something to devour, something that may seem to be minding her own business, like the chicken with her head down, scratching in the dirt. If that chicken had been looking up, being watchful for the danger that lurked around her, she may have been able to avoid the disaster and run inside to hide from the hawk. We can learn from her mistake and always keep an open eye on what may lurk around us, watching for the little ways the devil might sneak in and snatch us up in a moment of frenzy and we will not know what hit us. Just a thought to consider as you begin this new week. Keep your mind on Him at all times and He will protect you
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