By Pastor Mark Jordan
“How often I have wanted to gather your people just as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings.” (Luke 13:34b, CEB)
Our subdivision has a small pond adjacent to the road. There is something sweet and beautiful happening on the bank, which is visible as you cruise up and down the main thoroughfare. A mother goose has apparently laid some eggs, and is dutifully sitting on them, giving her nurture and protection. She has been out there in the night and day, cold and the warmth, in the rain and in the sun, in the wind and while everything is still. She might reposition herself, but for days, I have not seen this mother goose leave her perch. Now, whenever we are leaving or coming home, we look to see this mother goose, and cheer her on in this life-giving task.
This beautiful image brings to mind a longing in the heart of Jesus. Just days before he went to the cross, he stood and offered a lament over Jerusalem. He knew the city was going to reject him, and he reflected upon how difficult this was on his heart. This is when He said he wanted to gather all of his people to Himself as a mother hen gathers her chicks under her wings. Jerusalem’s rejection ignited a global projection as the mission soon spread across the world.
It’s true that Jerusalem rejected Jesus, but His perch on Calvary was meant for more. As Christ’s arms were outstretched on the crucifix, they were now poised to gather the entire world together, Jewish or not. And this is for you and me…for all times and all places.
Jesus wants to hold you firmly under His wings, and keep you safely in His nest…day or night, hot or cold, stormy or still. This is what He longs to do, because He longs for you. He wasn’t afforded that opportunity all those millennia ago, but like the nails, He took the matter into His own hands to gather the entire world in His eternal embrace. Will you accept His offer today, and rest securely under His care? Will you?
Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for making room in your eternal nest for me. I confess there are times I have wandered into the elements, physical and spiritual alike, wondering where you were. Still, you steadfastly endured all in order to protect me and provide for me. I accept your loving embrace, and rest in you, because I need it so desperately. I pray this in your holy name. Amen.