This story has chickens in it. If you’re easily frightened by poultry in motion, you may want to skip this one.
Years ago my family and I were at my aunt and uncle’s house in a town outside Ann Arbor, Michigan. They all lived in this wonderful house that my uncle built years ago for his wife and 11 children. To this day, as you enter the home there is a staircase that leads to the basement with a slide right next to it for those that choose to enter the basement with a little more class. When this house was still being built, we would swing from ropes tied to beams through the house, pretending that we were superheroes and jungle creatures. I love this house. I love this family.
It’s also important to note that they had a decent amount of property which included an outstanding sledding hill and a beautiful creek. They had a different number of cats every week it seemed, along with one of the best black labs I’ve eve known. They also had a couple horses and chickens that they kept near the front of the house.
One afternoon while visiting with my aunt in the basement of their beautiful home, my six year-old brother Elijah came waddling down the stairs, cringing in pain. His knees were touching as he carefully slung the bottom portion of his leg for each arduous and awkward step. He was holding himself as if he had to use the bathroom but wobbling as if someone threw a bowling ball at his crotch.
As Elijah slowly made his way to us ala Tiny Tim, we saw that he was clearly injured in some way and ran over to investigate. “What’s wrong, Lije?” we asked. “Are you okay?”
“Mu…muh…my peepie…” he murmured.
Which begged the obvious question “What’s wrong with your peepie, buddy?”
“It’s bleeding!” he exclaimed with all the might his six year-old lungs could muster.
A little surprised by his proclamation, we dug a bit deeper. “Why on Earth is your peepie bleeding, pal?”
He thought about that question for a second, sheepishly looked to the ground, and said “The chicken. He… he bit it.”
Trying our very best to hold back the chuckles and be mature, caring adults – we continued our investigation. “Now, why would the chicken bite your little soldier, Elijah?”
There was an uncomfortably long pause this time, so we asked again.
Finally, as he looked crestfallenly at his shoes, the mystery was solved.
“Well…” he said slowly. “I was peeing on it.”
At this point we simply could not hold back our laughter any longer. We burst out in what I’m sure was obnoxiously clamorous giggling like that of a four year-old boy after seeing underwear for the first time. It was absurd.
The following night as we were eating dinner, my father turned to my mom and said “This is delicious, hon. Is it turkey?” She replied “Nope, it’s actually chicken.”
And just as my mom said that, Elijah, sitting there at the end of the table, took his fork and with a look of dismay brutally stabbed the last remaining piece of chicken on his plate.
I’d be lying if I said we didn’t all laugh like schoolgirls again.
Instead of attempting to launch into some sort of clever life-application, I’ll simply ask this question:
“How many of us are absolutely furious with circumstances that we willingly put ourselves in?”
What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God!—harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life. – Galatians 6:8 (The Message)