I knew it would happen eventually. I knew my fear would become a reality one day. I just knew that I would be completely helpless when it finally did happen.
And then… one day, it happened.
I got stuck in the chicken coop.
It was very early in the morning; the sun hadn’t yet risen. It was the time right before daybreak, as fog covered the ground. It was just bright enough to see what I was doing. I was going about my daily, early morning routine: feeding and watering the dogs then feeding and watering the chickens.
Because we live in the country with no neighbors nearby to see me, I can go about my early morning routine in my nightgown (very decent of course!) and rubber boots :). And this morning, like all the others, that’s exactly what I was wearing!
This particular morning, I had just finished feeding and watering the dogs and was taking fresh feed and water to the chicken coop (which is really a mobile chicken house that is just TOO cute! :). I filled up their feeder with feed, and as I pulled the string to unlock the door of the coop so I could get out… the unthinkable happened! THE STRING BROKE!
I have to close the door to the chicken coop every time I go in because our “ladies” (the hens) will storm the door to escape if the door isn’t closed. And I do mean STORM. THE. DOOR!
And so, on this very early foggy morning, I found myself in my nightgown and rubber boots LOCKED INSIDE OF THE CHICKEN COOP! It was quite the quandary!
I don’t carry my phone with me as I go about my early morning routine of feeding the animals, so I was really in quite a predicament. I had a decision to make. So, I carefully ran the options through my head.
I could either: A. Kick the door down with my new bionic knee (several months ago I had a total knee replacement) but risk injury to my new knee. B. Scream at the top of my lungs for help (but take the risk of the neighbors hearing me… and even though they were far away, the north breeze would carry my loud screaming very far to neighbors that I didn’t particularly want to
C. I could try to yell (but not too loud) to Eugene who was inside the house, still
Upon deep thought and pondering, I chose my option C.
I began yelling as loud as I could but not too loud for neighbors to hear Eugene’s name. I didn’t scream “Help!”, as again, I didn’t want anyone else to hear me and come find me in my predicament.
My very intentional yelling went on for about 15 minutes (which seemed like ETERNITY!) until finally, the back door of our house opened and Eugene stood on the back porch just staring at me. And because of his lack of concern for me, I really began yelling loudly for him to release me from my chicken coop nightmare!
He came, opened the door of the coop, turned around and walked back into the house, all without saying ONE WORD! As I stood in the backyard, with the dogs and chickens, I was humiliated.
“What is the moral of this story,” you might be asking?
(1) No matter how strong we are, how much we love God, or how well respected we are by others, WE ALL GET STUCK!
There are times in our lives that we just GET STUCK. It may be God humbling us because of our pride. Or it may just be that life has happened. It may be that we’ve taken a wrong turn or refused to heed the instructions from others. Or we might just be going about our business, living out our normal routines.
But we all get stuck at some point in our lives. And when you do get stuck, don’t do something stupid in trying to get unstuck!
(2) Be very purposeful to whom you scream “Help!”
Not everyone can handle seeing you stuck.
Not everyone can be trusted with seeing you in your nightgown and rubber boots.
And not everyone can see you stuck and keep it quiet.
Eugene’s lack of words that morning wasn’t because he was protecting my honor. It was because he saw himself living out a real life episode of “I Love Lucy!”
He later told me that, when he heard my yelling his name, he initially thought it was a wounded cat on our back porch! 🙂
Not everybody can handle you being stuck. Be very careful to whom you cry out for help.
(3) There’s no quicker way for God to humble you than for you to get stuck.
I was literally at the mercy of whoever could come get me out of that chicken coop! And I was praying it would be my husband, not some random stranger or neighbor!
And I realized very quickly that I wasn’t the farm girl I thought I had become. 🙂 A seasoned, wise farm girl would have checked the string regularly to make sure it was still strong and intact. An even wiser farm girl would not have even depended on a lousy piece of string to be her lifeline out of a chicken coop! And the wisest farm girl of all would have had a professional come fix the door to the coop, so no string was needed at all!
I was humbled very quickly.
And so, it is in our spiritual lives. God will use whatever measure possible to speak to us, to humble us, and for us to realize that no matter who we are… we are all going to get stuck at times and it’s the people we intentionally invite into our lives that He will use to rescue us from those places.
Invite and embrace those people into your lives now ~ because early one morning, while the fog is still covering the ground, you might be in your nightgown and rubber boots yelling out their names. 🙂
(P.S. We have since fixed the door to the chicken coop so this disaster can never happen again!)