The Gospel of Blue Eggs
There's this recent belief building in me: everything will preach. I find myself in conversations where a certain turn of phrase will catch my ear and I'll think that'll preach. Translation: I could wrap this wedge of life in the right words and scripture and preach, because it's a God breathed gem staring me straight in the face. Can you see it?
It's all about perspective, I'm learning. This is how we find the abundance of God. We can find Him in the difficulty of impossible schedules and the flow of life. The split second interactions between children. Sure, even the gallon jar of fermenting kombucha on my counter. It's all about perspective.
One March ago we rushed from home to post office to pick up our chirping package: baby chickens. We already had five other lovely, one month old baby chicks. But these weren't just any chickens. They were special. We would warm them, pet them, and pamper them all the way to maturity and they would give us (in my opinion) the most beautiful little things: blue eggs and deep, ruddy brown eggs. Six months until full grown was painfully but not impossibly far away.
Burger (yes, a chicken named burger) laid her first tan egg on sunny, summery day when everything in small business world was going wrong. I pulled open the nesting box and felt my heart burst with this small joy before heading out to a day of misadventure. The other older hens began laying not too long after. The whole family had the daily question: how many eggs today? Any blue or red ones yet?
Summer welcomed Fall and these three special hens had yet to lay. That's okay, I thought, they're a month younger than the others. They need more time. It has to happen some time. It's fine. Seven, eight, nine, ten months went by. Winter and it's -20 temps fell harshly upon our snow covered coop. Winter, the dormant time for laying hens, assured me I would not be having a blue Christmas.
The New Year brought other busy things. We sold our house. We moved into a tiny rental and built mountains of boxes in this temporary paradise (cough, more on that later, cough). I mother-henned my chickens into two large crates and we drove them to this place. Poor dears, I thought, this winter weather and the stress of moving is sure to keep us out of eggs for weeks to come. In fact, we hadn't had a single egg from any one chicken in three weeks. Maybe they sensed my stress or knew change was coming. Maybe they're birds who can't comprehend the complex emotional landscape of their owner. Or maybe...
Two weeks post move, I accepted the grace of a warm-ish day and I went out to the coop. With milk crates as temporary laying boxes, I helped each hen, one by one, into the crate as a encouragement and none-too-subtle reminder. Give me some eggs.
Or, as God had been whispering to me, you have work to do even here.
How many strains of our story have been colored by waiting? Waiting for children, a pastor, an acceptance letter, a confirmation, a court date, a closing date, test results...
Have you ever grown so accustomed to waiting, that you forget to ready yourself for the arrival? I've learned to wait against my every instinct. I've learned that waiting does, in fact, produce great and lasting things.
"And we also have joy with our troubles because we know that these troubles produce patience. And patience produces character, and character produces hope. And this hope will never disappoint us, because God has poured out his love to fill our hearts. God gave us his love through the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to us.
A day or so later, I walked out to check on the hens. By force of habit, but no longer by necessity, I checked for eggs. And there there! Laying in the straw was a beautiful, perfect teal-blue egg. I honestly shouted for joy. I'd forgotten that the waiting doesn't last forever. Here, warming in the embrace of my cupped hands, was (to me) a reminder of God's promise. That, while it wasn't easy, it was worth it. The next day brought a speckled egg, a terra cotta egg, and more blues.
See? Eggs will preach.
I may be a crazy chicken lady, but the truth in this blue token remains: We have a Lord who yearns for us to wait well. To return again and again to His word, even when we feel bone dry and emptied, and the things we're after just don't give us what we're hoping for. The blue egg was the end I'd envisioned all along, but there may be things coming to you that you'd never imaged. Things you never knew you wanted. Things you don't want at all. But...it's all about perspective. Everything will preach because we live in a God breathed world. He has something for us in every turn.
Can you press into this waiting, believing that God is faithful? Can you pause in the middle of your hurt, your barren time, the aching wintery gap that you stand in and believe that our God waits with you? What does God have for you while you're waiting?