When we first moved to Tennessee and started homesteading, the first animals we raised were chickens. My father-in-law, wanting to support our endeavor, brought some of his full grown chickens all the may from Maryland to Tennessee. He gave us an older hen, who did not lay anymore but was an excellent brooder. Since she was a Bantam hen, the kids named her “Granny Bani.” The other young hens would lay their eggs in the egg boxes, but Granny Bani would move their eggs to her box and set on them. She would turn them and warm them until they hatched. When the chicks were very small, they were not tall enough to get water from the watering container. So Granny Bani would stretch out her wing next to the container. The chicks would hop onto her wing and be high enough to drink. As the chicks grew, she would lead them out of the hen house and show them how to eat grass, and scratch for bugs. If a shadow fell across her during this time, and she thought there might be a predator from above, she would cackle and the chicks would come running and gather under her wings. Although she was a small chicken, she could usually hide about seven chicks under her wings without detection. Granny Bani’s adopted chicks grew up to be the smartest and healthiest chickens.
I was reading Hebrews 10 this morning and when I got to verse 24 and 25, the word “assembling” really popped out to me:
“And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”
The Greek word for assembling is “episunagoge” and was cross referenced to
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that kills the prophets and stones them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered their children together, even as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings , and you would not.”
Like the early church in Hebrews, we live in dangerous times. Because of Adam and Eve’s sin, Satan became the god of this world (how could he truly have tempted Christ with rule of the world if this was not so Matthew 4:9). As ruler of this world’s political system, he is constantly trying to kill Christians and all humans. He is the thief, who stole governance of this world from Adam and Eve and his primary aim is to “steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10). he’s conspiring against us
One can be overwhelmed by the news today. Our government, which was founded on the Christian principles, has turned more and more from those principles. Seems like there is some shocking, godless thing they do everyday. Corruption and policies that bolster death, not life, seem to be the new normal. Everything is acceptable in this society, but Christians and their convictions. So how do we live in a world like this? How do we not get overwhelmed into an ineffectual state of anxiety? We have to run to our Lord and let him cover us “with his feathers – under his wings shall we trust (Psalm 91:4). But where is Christ on this earth? “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, I am there in the midst of them (Matthew 18:20). We get together with other believers and provoke one another to love and good works. There we are comforted, fortified and re-centered. Coming together for a Church service, or small group meeting, or just hanging out with some other believers seems like such a small thing to combat such great evil in this world. Can it be that simple? It is. When we are together, we are force multipliers.