Broody Hen

by Lisa on June 5, 2012

The broody hen just wants to be left alone and if she is bothered too much she will stop brooding. Keep her occupied and away from the nest she has chosen. Remove any and all eggs, move her as often as possible and bother her, making her uncomfortable.

I am a broody hen. Sitting on top of all my eggs. Warming my sinful nature. Looking for reasons to stay in my nesting box, Not wanting to venture out into the world for life-giving water and life-sustaining food.


Because I still struggle against God.

Because I still struggle against Grace.

Because I still struggle against Love.

I find myself looking around the table. The women laugh and talk. They delve into their chocolate decadence, their carmel and pecan sweets, their confectionary delights. Young and middle-aged alike offer pearls of wisdom to the one in the middle, on the brink of a new decade.

But I have nothing to offer.

No pearls. No wisdom.

I sit in the brightly colored room, flooded with warm light, and I listen. Laughter rings out and their voices fill the space. Forks clink against plates and coffee cups jangle against saucers. On the inside, the battle ensues. The rockets fire and the cannons burst. The sound is deafening. I want to cover my ears from the cacophony of sounds, yet I also want, so desperately, to participate. I want to speak words of Truth, Beauty and Love. I want to look smart, and knowledgeable, and wise. I want to impart something worthwhile, something useful. But I also realize that if I say anything it will surely betray my raging battleground of thoughts—and my words will sound as hollow, and as empty, and as fake as I feel.

I sink into my chair. I feel like a failure.

In an instant, I decide to pull myself up by my bootstraps and try anyway. I re-right myself in my chair. I try to think of words that sound encouraging and helpful. I try to brainstorm some nifty sounding cliche about life and/or what I’ve learned in my 43 years of fumbling around. I think about retweeting a nugget of Bible knowledge or a scripture verse. After all, I do know all the right churchy things to say or do. I’ve learned all the right churchy ways to act and conduct myself publicly, and I’ve parroted all the right churchy ways to think or believe.

But, in the end, I also know better. I am a fraud. So I keep silent.

As I sit in a room filled with people, I continue my private wrestling match, my private battle. I pull deeper into myself.

At home I continue to brood. “What’s wrong?” my husband asks. “Nothing,” I reply. How can I tell him? I am a failure. A fraud. A nothing. —without sounding like I am having a whiney, pity-party. How can I tell him? I am lost and I am hopeless even after all these years. How can I tell him? I am in need of a Savior—one that I thought I already knew and understood.

I crawl in bed. Tears silently slip down my cheeks. Sleep eludes me.

I think about the evening. I finally conclude that this internal war rages on because I do not fully, or completely, understand Grace. I begin to pray.


Abba Father,

Help me.

Please do not leave me alone. Bother me enough to stop brooding. Keep me occupied in Your ways and away from my nest of complacency and comfort. Remove my eggs of blindness and pride. Remove my eggs of disbelief and doubt. Remove my eggs of anger and bitterness and negative self-talk.  Move me often—and toward You. Bother me. Make me uncomfortable. Break these chains of bondage so that I can grow in wisdom and in grace. So that I can grow in love and freedom. So that I can grow in true knowledge and admonition of You—and all that You lived for, and died for, and rose again for.

Help me—

to know, and understand, the true meaning of Grace.

And, thank you that tomorrow is a new day.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Cat June 6, 2012 at 10:19 am

I loved this post. It is how I had been feeling. Thanks for sharing.
I noticed you have Gifts from the Sea in your library thing. I love that book.


Esther Irish (@LaughWithUsBlog) June 6, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Hi! Great to meet you! It is so interesting that in the midst of these feelings we feel so alone, like we must be the only ones feeling this way. Yet we’d be surprised how many all around us are feeling the exact same way! Great post!

Lisa June 6, 2012 at 10:57 pm

Thanks for the kind words. Looking forward to reading more of your posts too—oh…and, we also homeschool.

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