Today’s Word: Last night I had the daunting task of preparing our chicken coop for winter. After 3 months, our 31 small chicks have grown into monster layers. Now that they have matured to adult size, the coop must be modified to prepare for the chickens to lay their eggs. To start with, my son Landon and I raked and shoveled all of the “stuff” into piles and placed it out in the run outside the coop. From there, we had to tear down and reconstruct the existing roosting area in order to make it larger to compensate for the growth of the birds. And finally, we covered the ground with fresh wood chips. As dusk approached, I sat on the porch waiting with anticipation to see how the chickens would like their new home. Yet as dusk turned into night, I was puzzled to see the majority of the chickens still out in the run. So I entered the run and attempted to guide the chickens into the coop.
To my dismay, they kept fighting me and would not enter the coop. It was like they were afraid of what was inside. I couldn’t understand. They spent their entire lives in that coop, yet now they didn’t recognize it anymore. They feared the changes that took place in their home. Scripture teaches us, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2Corinthians 5:17). For many of us, we fear change. Moreover, we fear changes that take place within our own hearts. Yet as we grow in grace, the Spirit of God will continually cleanse and transform our hearts into the likeness of Christ. For many of us this process can be frightening. We may find ourselves asking: Why don’t I enjoy the things I use to do anymore? Why don’t I want to hang out with my old friends anymore? And why do I feel this yoke of guilt when I make poor choices?
The truth is, even though these changes are good for our wellbeing, we fear the transformation of our hearts. We are like chickens that are no longer comfortable in their own coop. The Word of the day is that our God is a God of comfort. Paul proclaims, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).
Therefore, let us not fear the changes that are taking place within us. Rather, let us rejoice that we now have a relationship to God through Christ by means of the Holy Spirit. The uncomfortable changes in us are only a deposit of what is to come; our glorification in Christ. So fear not my friends! Let us enter into His rest and praise His name as we see transformation happing in our hearts. And if we come upon a fellow chicken in the run, let us share the comfort we ourselves receive from God.