“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you…” James 4:8
I guess I have always raised some kind of livestock, but I will have to admit that my cows have always been my favorite. There is something satisfying about seeing them grazing in the pasture and calling to you when they see you walking near the feed trough. If I had to name my second favorite farm animal, it would have to be my chickens. I have a dozen hens in a pen that is about 20 foot by 15 foot. Every morning I walk in the pen with the feed bucket in hand and I gladly swap the feed for the fresh eggs. I will have to admit that during this time of the year it really isn’t a fair swap, because they aren’t laying too many eggs. One thing that I have always done as a treat for the girls is I put two slices of bread in my pocket every morning as I head out. When they see me coming many of them will run up to the door to greet me. Now I don’t think a chicken can actually smile, but it kind of looks like they are. After I pour the laying crumbles out, I take the two slices of bread and start to break it up into small pieces and throw it to them. Over the years I have noticed that chickens can have their own personalities. When I am breaking the bread some will literally stand on my feet hoping that I will drop some. Some will stand close so that they can see which direction that I am going to throw the pieces. There are a few that will eat the bread out of my hands. However, there are others in the flocks that keep their distance from me. It’s not that they don’t want the bread, but they just don’t want to be close to me. Oddly enough, the prettiest hen in the pen will stay the furthest from me. Maybe she thinks she is too pretty to get excited about seeing me?
Chickens are a lot like people, or maybe it is the other way around. There are people that want to be as close to God as possible. Many love to just be at His feet or in His hands and want to spend time with Him. Many enjoy the blessings of being close to Him, but so many others want a blessing, but don’t want to be close to Him. Many want to get as much as they can from Him, but want to stay as far away from Him as possible. Beloved the real blessings come from having that close, intimate relationship with Him. True blessings come from being in His presence during worship or your own prayer time. Yes, every person in the world experiences God’s blessings in some degree. I don’t know about you, but I want to experience God’s full blessings. Can I get an “Amen”? I can’t think of a better time of the year to start getting closer to God, during the time of the year that we celebrate God’s ultimate demonstration of drawing near to us, when He sent Jesus.