“What’s for dinner?” both boys ask.
Chicken. Wash up and come to the kitchen for grace.
They comply, gather round the island, and bow their heads. As soon as the “Amen” sounds, the bellowing begins.
“I call the chicken leg!” blurts out of the younger teen, Nick.
“No! I call the chicken leg!” the older teen, Zach, shouts playfully, trying to express his elder status dominance.
“No! I called the chicken leg FIRST, so I get it!” Nick banters back.
“You called chicken leg? What’s the number?” Zach asks.
Without skipping a beat, Nick says, “1-800-CHICKEN-LEG”
Our howling laughter rises and fills to the top of the cathedral log ceiling.
As a homeschooling mom, I taught our boys their math fundamentals as well as some science. Apparently, they think 2 – 1 = 0 or that chickens come with only one leg. So, like any good homeschooling mom, I reteach.
Um . . . guys . . . chickens have TWOlegs so you can BOTH have a leg.
“Oh yeah.” Nick says. “I didn’t see the other one.”
Well just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there! (Such a deep metaphysical comment emanating from an argument over chicken legs!)
They laugh at my chicken lesson and notice the gleam in my eye as I pick up my camera. They KNOW what’s coming.
“MOM! Are you going to write a blog post about 1-800-CHICKEN-LEG?!”
“You should! You SHOULD! It’s hilarious!”
Two days later, they both keep asking me if I’ve written about 1-800-CHICKEN-LEG.
I guess I should write. But first I pray. I realize I need a lesson about chicken legs.
So, here’s what I got by calling 1-800-CHICKEN-LEG. I got ahold of the One who makes chickens and He opened His Manual and showed me two truths:
1. We are not all chicken legs.
2. We have enough chicken legs.
Now, you might ask, where exactly are both these teachings about chicken legs written in Scripture?
The essence of “We are not all chicken legs” can be found in I Corinthians 12:12 that says,
The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.
We all have different functions and gifts, and no one is better or more important than another. In other words, we’re not supposed to ignore the wings and favor the legs. And we’re not supposed to wish we were legs if we’re wings, just because legs might get more attention.
We’re all special, just the way we are. God says so. We can stop striving to be something we’re not because when we try to be something we’re not, we deprive the world of our unique contribution and basically tell God He didn’t know what He was doing when He made us. Ouch.
Now for precept number two.
The essence of “We have enough chicken legs” can be found in Matthew 14:15-21 and Matthew 15:32-38. In the first passage, Jesus feeds five thousand people with five loaves of bread and two fish. In the second passage, Jesus feeds four thousand people with seven loaves of bread and a few small fish. The same disciples, who witnessed the first miraculous multiplication of food, still maintained their scarcity mentality and disbelief.
How often do we fight and covet and grumble because we don’t have what we want or what we think we need? God is the giver of all good things and He provides abundantly. There is enough to go around. If we think there’s not enough, something’s wrong and that something is not God. Could it be disbelief or inappropriate allocation of resources? Either way, scarcity mentalities do not bring about the glory of God. What would happen if we were to start believing we HAVE enough and we ARE enough? Would we give thanks, as Jesus did before breaking the bread and fish? Would we be satisfied as were the crowds who couldn’t eat all the abundance of Christ’s provision? Would we give the overflow gathered to those in need?
All this–from one chicken leg and two teenage boys? Thanks God.
Nick walks into the room and asks me if I am writing 1-800-CHCKEN-LEG.
He is smiling wide, eyes big. “Read it to me!”
Stretched out on the floor, hands under head, he listens and laughs and takes it all in.
And then, at the end, I get his seal of approval. He sits up, looks at me with that beautiful steel-bracketed smile, and gives me two thumbs up.
Thanks again God, for teenage boys and laughter and chicken legs and words—Your word, especially.