I think chicken must have been the original meal on wheels—or meal on feet, if you will.
Just think, those feather balls were just the right size for a family of four. I can imagine my friend Ugh!, the caveman, chasing one for dinner. The amount of calories that Ugh! expended in pursuing the pre-historic chicken equaled the amount he took in when he ate his fourth of the bird.
The perfect food.
And chasing chickens proved to be a lot safer than stalking saber-tooth tigers. They didn’t have teeth. And what advantage would it be to down a tiger, anyway? You kill it and cook it. When someone asks you what it tastes like, you say, “Chicken.” So, if it tastes like chicken anyway, why not chase the less lethal variety?
Honestly, if not for eating, what good is a chicken? You won’t find anything much dumber. I guess they keep the grasshopper population under control but that’s not usually a big problem in most places. They can be smelly and you sure have to watch where you step when they’ve been around.
Have you ever wondered what a chicken thinks about humans, though? I’m not sure a chicken thinks very much, but if two of them could converse, their talk might go like this:
“Harvey, I just can’t understand why God made humans. What good are they? They just take up useful space on the earth. You can’t even eat them.”
“I know what you mean, Ralph. And they stink! You can’t even walk across a road without getting creamed by one of those stinky, loud machines they ride around in all time. And just what do they contribute to the world? Kids, kids, and more kids. They take, but what do they give?”
“And Harvey,” here Ralph lowered his voice. “They’re cannibals! You bring a chick into the world and he ends up at McDonalds as a McNugget. I can hardly bear to think of it.”
“Or Chick-filet!” Harvey wails. “No, I just don’t see why God put humans on the earth.”
Now, you’re wondering, “How in the world is David going to get a spiritual application for that story.” Hang on! I’m thinking.
It’s funny how easy it is for us to maximize our value and emphasize what happens to us, while we minimize others and what happens to them. If we think chickens are useless, except for lunch, chickens may think that humans are dangerous, but not so important. They could exist without us.
How often do I discount what someone else does and think it unimportant, while what I do, well, that’s another story? “I’m the center of the world,” think I.
It’s not a question of devaluing what I do; that’s silly. But, I should give equal value to what my brother does, because it’s also important. And not just to him. It’s important for me, too.
I catch myself undervaluing people who irritate me or who I consider less intelligent or less capable. On the other hand, I feel like a silly chicken when I’m with someone more gifted than I.
We’ve got to remember. We’re not to compare ourselves with each other. We compare ourselves with what God created us to be. Then if we “measure up” it won’t be by downing someone else or feeling inferior ourselves.
If God created me a chicken, I need to concentrate on alleviating the grasshopper population, blessing people with good meals, and getting to the other side of the road. (Plus, laying an egg from time to time).
What has God created you to be? Don’t try to get your value by comparing yourself to someone you consider less than yourself. Compare yourself to the standard of what you can be in Jesus, and what he’s created you to be. Then you can appreciate your brother, and yourself in Christ.
And it will keep you working to be even better at what you were created to be.
“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.
“We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. (Rom. 12:3-7, NIV)
“The wonders of grace exceed the wonders of nature; and what is discovered of God by revelation is much greater than what is discovered by reason.” Matthew Henry