I am in the process of finishing up a chuckar hatch for a farmer up the road. We hatch and sell chicks all spring from our birds and then hatch special order chicks ( they supply their own eggs) during the summer. On a normal year we average from three hundred to four hundred chicks of various breeds. Not a large amount by any means but enough. Enough to know when things are going well and when they are not. I do not make a very good baby sitter during the hatching process. I can do the incubation but when it comes to hatching ~ well, I'm claustrophobic.
It just about kills me to sit and watch a baby chick try to struggle out of that tight... tight...so confining .......... ugggg, I'm going to hyperventilate just thinking about it......egg.
On this day however, I noticed that one of the chicks really was having a hard time, "Oh" I uttered with out thinking "He's not going to make it" Bethany, right at my side asked who and why. "That little guy there, his membrane is too dry, see how white it is, he'll never push through that."
"Mom, help him!" she replied.
I couldn't. He was one of the first to hatch and the incubator cannot be opened until the very end. If it is opened too soon all of the moist hot air rushes out and cold air in, killing the fragile chicks inside. Nope, this little guy was on his own, I couldn't risk fifty other eggs just for one.
I shrug and try to lead her away but she is persistent. "Mom, that's cruel! You cannot leave him!" As the tears swell in her eyes I feel a lump in my throat. Stupid I know, we were talking about a bird no bigger than the end of my thumb, and shortly there would be so many she would never have noticed, if I had just kept my mouth shut. "I'm sorry, honey." And once again we have a talk of how death is simply a part, a very important part, of life.
Her distress is common among us mortals. Isn't it?
I can't count the number of times that I have heard
" If your God is real/good/all powerful/ fill in your own excuse.... Why does he let bad things happen to good people?"
The answer is simple, we are not good.
"There is none righteous, no not one." declares my real/ good/powerful God. "All our righteousness is as filthy rags."
The truth is we do not deserve the GOOD things that happen to us, it's not the bad that we should be fussing over.
When God created the world he created everything "good" and wonderful. He said so. He then created Man and gave all his "good" and wonderful creation to him as a gift. It was now man's dominion. To till, to dress, to keep and enjoy. Man, however, was about the face his first battle. ~And fail.
When Adam sinned against God, by default he handed this world ( government, principalities, leadership) over to Satan.
"as by one man sin entered into the world and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned."
When my children were little I taught them the song "This is my father's world" I often thought that we should change it to "This was my father's world" For while we can see traces of beauty. Some of the glory, some of the peace. This is in fact a fallen world, corrupt and doomed for failure. This old world is a has-been. Traces of it's once glorious state are all that is left to us. When we feel the warm sun on our face or hear the musical tone of a child's laughter they are but mere whispers... urging us on, saying " take heart, my child, press forward, for the best is yet to come."
So what do we do with the bad? When a child dies, a spouse flees, the job is lost? How do we give thanks for that? With Zachary's recent accident fresh in my mind, I must stop for serious reflection before I write this. What if? What if my son had not been spared to me? Could I give thanks? We are commanded to give thanks for all things. Could I? The thought is almost too painful. The best I could come up with is......... I hope so. I hope that my relationship with my Saviour is deeper than lip service. Then again I also hope I never have to find out.
I imagine myself crying out as the father of the son who had the dumb spirit "Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief." I believe that you will work all for good but please remember I am but dust and cannot do it on my own.
It is so easy to look at life from our perspective, our limited vision. The apostle Paul puts it as "seeing through a glass darkly" . We in our flesh want a little genie in the sky to grant our every wish, but it cannot be.
Our view from the outside of the incubator was one that pained us, my daughter thought there was a "simple fix" but I knew it had to be. Likewise, with our Saviour, He feels and shares our pain. He keeps a close eye on us, knowing what needs to happen for our good. He promises to be there to hold us up but he does not promise to take it away.
There is appointed a time for everyone of us to return to the dust. There is growth in tribulation. EVERYTHING has a purpose. Sometimes it's painful, sometimes glorious....but always.....always for good.
What more could we ask for?