19 May 2014
Chickens and Eagles
A man found an eagle’s egg and put it in a nest of a barnyard hen. The eaglet hatched with the brood of chicks and grew up with them.
All his life the eagle did what the barnyard chicks did, thinking he was a barnyard chicken. He scratched the earth for worms and insects. He clucked and cackled. And he would thrash his wings and fly a few feet into the air.
Years passed and the eagle grew very old. One day he saw a magnificent bird above him in the cloudless sky. It glided in graceful majesty among the powerful wind currents, with scarcely a beat of its strong golden wings.
The old eagle looked up in awe. "Who’s that?" he asked.
"That’s the eagle, the king of the birds," said his neighbour. "He belongs to the sky. We belong to the earth — we’re chickens."
So the eagle lived and died a chicken, for that’s what he thought he was.
I've been reminded of this story whilst mulling over these thoughts about flying.
Both of these creatures are birds; both have a beak, feathers, wings. The chicken spends much of its time on the ground with other chickens, scratching around for food and keeping busy. They can only fly a little. When a storm comes, they run around, making lots of noise, scrambling for cover (I know this; my dad used to keep chickens when I was small!).
All of us (despite our background) will face the same sorts of storms in life; it is how we deal with them that makes the difference. Adversity can either kill us or help us to grow. It's how we respond that makes the difference.
God wants us to grow and be all that we can be. Do you see yourself with the potential to be an eagle? Soaring above your problems; using the strong currents of the storm to soar ever higher.
Or does everyone you meet keep telling you to stop trying? "After all, you are just a chicken..."