Stephen & Laura Holt | Sierra Leone, West Africa

The Secret Place

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” (Psalm 91:1)

I have always loved this portion of scripture; a tender picture of the relationship we have with the Lord as we draw near to Him and rest in His protection.  But this morning, as I sit in cool shades of dawn, listening to the gentle sounds of my chickens arousing, a new imagery comes to my mind.

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My ongoing attempts to jolt the girls from their broodiness by removing them from the boxes – often several times a day!

I have a couple of “broody” hens and no matter how I try to jolt them from their broodiness, they remain intent in their cause: the driving desire to incubate the eggs.  The problem with these want-to-be-mom hens is that they stop laying eggs.  But day after day they tenderly warm the eggs which their comrades are content to simply deposit and then ignore.  Without a rooster among my flock there’s no hope of the eggs hatching but the hens don’t understand this basic principle of nature and give it a valiant effort nonetheless.  Another problem which arises is the difficulty these broody hens present as I daily harvest the prized eggs.  With great resolve of purpose these girls fiercely defend their clutches of eggs.  I’ve learned that I cannot simply reach under my hens but I must inspect them closely; frisk them you might say.  They can even stand up while I snatch the eggs within my view but they may still be hiding one or two more.  Where, you ask?  They have a secret place!  High up under their wings, in the cushion of their softest feathery down, they tightly clutch these eggs; near to their hearts, warmed and safe, hidden from view and protected from the enemy – me.

Ah, sweet picture of God’s secret place.  “He shall cover thee with his feathers and under his wings shalt thou trust.” (verse 4)

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