We let our chickens free range in the yard around our farmhouse. The original owners put a fence around the yard, closing in over a half-acre which is perfect for nearly a dozen chickens to scratch and peck at bugs and such.
This morning was no different as I let the chickens out of the coop. While I folded laundry I could see them out of the window working their way through the yard. Suddenly I heard a squawk and a large red-tailed hawk flew by the window. I went downstairs to check on the chickens who had run for cover under the lilac bushes. All were fine, but definitely stayed where it was safe unless I was in the yard with them.
I have said before, we as Christians are a lot like chickens. I know the Bible compares us to sheep, but chickens fit too. Today’s event reminded me again of our need to be watchful in our Faith journey.
The chickens were doing what they were created to do. They were near each other, but each one was on its own and one was farther away from the others. Alone, unsupported and unprotected from the enemy- who was watching and waiting for an opportunity to strike.
Silently, the enemy swooped down, talons at the ready to strike deep at its prey. While, yes it was unsuccessful this time, flying away with empty claws, the impact and response was swift. The community gathered together under protection, bringing in the one who had been attacked. Only venturing out when their protector (me) came out to care for them.
We need to remember as brothers and sisters in Christ to come alongside those who are straying off, reminding them of the dangers of the enemy of God. He will strike swiftly, silently, intending to deeply injure us on our Faith journey. We must remember that our Heavenly Father offers us protection from the enemy under His wings (Psalm 91).
I looked for the hawk after it flew off. It sat perched at the top of a tree about 50-yards from the chickens. I knew that it would sit there, waiting for another opportunity- just like our enemy does each day. I also knew that the chickens would be staying closer to the protection of the bushes.
My prayer for each of us as we continue walking with our Heavenly Father, would be that we would be watchful, prayerful, and alert. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8 NIV).
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people (Ephesians 6:18 NIV).
The enemy will not stop trying to prevent us from growing in our Faith and from encouraging others to do the same. We must remind ourselves that though the enemy will not stop, Christ has already won. We walk in victory because of the Cross. You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world (1 John 4:4).