Once a farmer found an eagle’s egg in an abandoned nest. He took it home and slipped it in amongst his chickens under a brooding hen. When the egg hatched the mother hen reared the eagle chick as if it were her own child. And so that eagle chick grew up thinking that he was a chicken. He pecked like a chicken, he scratched like a chicken he even walked like a chicken. But in time, he grew bigger and it became clear to the other birds that this chick was an eagle. They would swoop down and say, “You are an eagle, you and the king of the birds. Come and fly with us.”
“I’m not an eagle, I’m a chicken,” he’d tell them. “My mother’s a chicken. I live like a chicken. I am a chicken. Now go away!”
But that young eagle chick continued to grow. One day an owl swooped down.
“Get on my back,” he said, “I’ve got something to show you.”
The young eagle hopped onto the owl’s back and the owl flew high into the sky.
“Put me down. Put me down. I don’t like it up here,” the young eagle squawked.
“You’ll be fine,” said the owl. “Trust me.” Soaring higher and higher, the owl finally flipped himself over and the eagle fell, plummeting fast towards the ground.
“Why?” screeched the eagle. “I’m going to die.” “Just open your wings,” called the owl.
The eagle opened his wings and was caught by the wind. Soon he was soaring above the farm and the chickens below. “You’re right,” cried the eagle. “I am an eagle. I can fly.”
This story is similar in our life. We often get misplaced in a different nest. We don’t realize our true abilities and fall behind. It’s only when we realize our true potential we can succeed in life.
We see a similar incident recorded in the Gospel of Mark 4:35-41.
‘That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”’ (Mark 4:35-41 NIV)
Here we see Jesus and His disciples sailing towards Gadarenes across the Sea of Galilee. This same incident is mentioned in Mathew 8:23-27. We need to know most of Jesus’s disciples were fishermen and they knew very well to handle the boat in the sea. When the storm rose they tried everything they knew to control the boat. But the storm appeared to be out of their hands and they were frightened. It is then they woke Jesus from sleep, for they were sure they were going sink in the sea. But to their amazement, Jesus rebuked the wind and commanded the waves to be quiet and still, and the storm died down and the sea became calm! The disciples were amazed for they only seen Jesus heal the sick and the demon possessed, but not calming down the raging sea. This incident gave them the courage and confidence to face any situation in life for Jesus is with them and He is capable to deliver them from any situation.
Even then, as we all know all the disciples were frightened and Peter betrayed Jesus three times when Jesus was captured by the Roman soldiers and brought to trial in Jerusalem.
‘Now Peter was sitting out in the courtyard, and a servant girl came to him. “You also were with Jesus of Galilee,” she said. But he denied it before them all. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said. Then he went out to the gateway, where another servant girl saw him and said to the people there, “This fellow was with Jesus of Nazareth.” He denied it again, with an oath: “I don’t know the man!” After a little while, those standing there went up to Peter and said, “Surely you are one of them; your accent gives you away.” Then he began to call down curses, and he swore to them, “I don’t know the man!” Immediately a rooster crowed. Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.’ (Matthew 26:69-75 NIV)
Even then Jesus loved his disciples and after the crucifixion and resurrection He appeared several times to them in different occasions and reassured them to have faith in God. And just as Jesus was going to heaven, He gave all authority to his disciples as we see in Mathew 28:16-20- ‘Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”’ (Matthew 28:16-20 NIV)
Later, when we come to the Acts of Apostles, we see God using Peter as the leader of the apostles and use him mightily for the Glory of the Kingdom of God! Since he was no longer a chicken like in the story, but He realized he was an eagle!
This is why when we come to the 12th chapter of Acts of Apostles, we see Peter appear peaceful and calm even though he was caught and put in prison to be killed by King Herod.
‘It was about this time that King Herod arrested some who belonged to the church, intending to persecute them. He had James, the brother of John, put to death with the sword. When he saw that this met with approval among the Jews, he proceeded to seize Peter also. This happened during the Festival of Unleavened Bread. After arresting him, he put him in prison, handing him over to be guarded by four squads of four soldiers each. Herod intended to bring him out for public trial after the Passover. So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. Then the angel said to him, “Put on your clothes and sandals.” And Peter did so. “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me,” the angel told him. Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision. They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him. Then Peter came to himself and said, “Now I know without a doubt that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches and from everything the Jewish people were hoping would happen.” When this had dawned on him, he went to the house of Mary the mother of John, also called Mark, where many people had gathered and were praying.’ (Acts 12:1-12 NIV)
James Peter’s cousin and fellow disciple was killed by King Herod and now he has arrested Peter and put him in prison to kill him. But Peter seems calm and peaceful in the prison. And as Jesus was sleeping in the boat in the middle of outraging sea here Peter is sleeping peacefully when his life was at stake. For Peter has realized like the eagle in the story that he is no longer a chicken, but an eagle who is not supposed to hide like other chicken under the wings of the mother hen but to fly above everything and rule over the skies! Like the eagle Peter has realized the power of God whom he serve for God is able to deliver him from the situation. Later we see God sending an angel and rescuing him from the jail and even then Peter was sleeping, thinking he was having a vision! Finally, when the angel brings Peter to the city and leave him Peter wake up from the sleep and realize it was not a dream, but God sent his angel to rescue him from the clutches of Herod and from everything the Jewish people were hoping would happen to him!
See the new Peter! He was no longer the old Peter who ran away and betrayed Jesus, but he has become the leader of the Apostles and proved to the same Jews who killed Jesus that Jesus is the true God and spread the true Gospel of Jesus to the unknown and gained many lives for Christ. In the first message from Peter 3000 people accepted Jesus as Lord and Saviour in their life and took baptism and became the part of the New Testament church! See the transformation!
‘Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.’ (Acts 2:41 NIV)
Like Peter, God has encapsulated the Holy Spirit to those who accepted Jesus as Lord and Saviour in life and born again. We are no longer chicken, but are eagles. When problems arise in our life we are not supposed to hide like the chicken under the wings of mother hen, but like the eagle let’s fly high and face the problem and overcome it by the power of the Holy Spirit encapsulated in us like the eagle which fly above the storm and rule over the skies while other birds hide themselves in shelter seeing the storm!
‘And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.’ (John 14:16-18 NIV)
“All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:25-27 NIV)
‘Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.’ (Isaiah 40:28-31 NIV)
Therefore, my dear readers, accept Jesus the true God as Lord and Saviour in your life and lead a holy life for you will not be a chicken finding out shelters anymore, but God will transform you to an eagle ready to face any challenges in life by courageously facing the challenges and overcoming them by the power of the Holy Spirit for the glory of God’s name. It doesn’t matter how much complicated your problems are but God will enable you to face those problems and bring you out with flying colors! For God is able and He will deliver you out of such situations.
Therefore, let’s break out our chicken shell and come out as strong eagles and face the challenges courageously and overcome them.
“I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?” (Jeremiah 32:27 NIV)