Jesus as a Mother Hen

Published May 17, 2013 by Maryanne

mother hen jesusBeautiful picture swiped from Google

(Note: there’s a copyright in the center if you look closely)

Today was the first day I got to go to the women’s bible study at my church. They have them every third Friday of the month, which is hard because some days I have assignments on Fridays but today I was free all day! It was definitely a day off and felt so good.

The theme today was “Beneath Her Wings,” a bible study article written by Audrey West and published in the March edition of Gather magazine.

When Jesus (in the Gospel of Luke) is on his way to meet his end in Jerusalem and he offers shelter, he refers to himself as a mother hen, to those who remain close to him.

Our pastor spoke of this before in a previous sermon. I like the idea of Jesus as a mother hen because it is a metaphor for someone soft and gentle, yet strong and protective — showing the feminine side of our savior Jesus Christ. With all the other biblical metaphors Jesus could have chosen — a lion, an eagle, a bear — he chose the hen, a mother who loves her chicks so much that she gives them shelter under her wings.

Another soft reference for Jesus is as the lamb of God, my person favorite imagery of Jesus.

One of the questions we discussed was what keeps people from desiring to be gathered beneath Christ’s wings … what gets in the way of our own acceptance of God’s shelter?

My answer was that people may not be rejecting Jesus, but rather how the church is viewed. Remember a few months ago when Pastor Bell didn’t want to tip a waitress and wrote a nasty note to her that read, “I give God 10 percent, why should I give you 18?” I blogged about it here:

Ridiculous things like this can turn people off to church. So it’s best, as Christians, to be more careful and not do silly things like this. It’s very hard to be sin free and perfect (I am the first to say because I can get very mean when provoked), but I feel that those in high places in the church have a responsibility to their flock and need to be on their best behavior when out in the public eye.

I also said that people may fear going to church because they could fear being judged. Unlike our church where people are so accepting. I shared that I felt comfortable from the get-go. Others in the church had tattoos like myself. Everyone is down to earth. I truly get so much comfort and joy going there because I can be myself. If this is how God loves me, so should everyone else — and I get that impression that I am very loved in my church, as I love everyone there too. Even if I wasn’t Christian, I can honestly say we really do have a good group of people who are positive, cheerful, polite, smart, fun, funny, joyous, happy, good hearted, kind and giving. (And I’m a fussy person who doesn’t take much to people — trust me on that!)

As June, who ran the bible study, said, “We have saints and sinners here alike … and you can’t beat that!” Not sure if those were her exact words, but that’s the gist of it, meaning no one is perfect and that’s fine!

Young girls in our church wear pretty dresses, some are short and that is fine. No one judges. I’ll never forget when I was young and I was wearing a short skirt. I got out of my car to go the bank and an old biddy yelled at me, “You have a Billy Graham bumper sticker on your car, but you are dressed like a hooker!” That was so mean. And I will never be that judging to another person, as long as I have my wits about me.

Another positive thing I learned about my church was that back in the 1960s the pastor who was at my church did a lot for the civil rights movement, which was absolutely great.

Being with this group of senior ladies for just a few hours really made my day. It takes me back to when I was just 18 and working my first job at Scribner Book Company. All the older ladies looked after me, like mother hens. Now I have this wonderful group of church ladies to converse with and share and grow with.

Perhaps this is a way Jesus manifests through other people … another way to interpret the “mother hen” reference.

Yeah, God is good that way … showing that He’s near in many creative ways and knows which way you personally will resonate most with.


7 comments on “Jesus as a Mother Hen

  • Am happy you like your church so much. We loved our last church so much, that we haven’t joined another church since then, but need to visit some churches, since we aren’t truly happy, unless we are involved with a church.

  • Well, You know me – how I seem to relate everything to a song… THe title of your post made me think of
    Till Armageddon no shalam, no shalom.
    Then the father hen will call his chickens home,
    The wise man will bow down before the throne.

    Johnny Cash “When the Man Comes Around”

    Was just listening to it last night and that verse jumped out at me –

    Great post Maryanne. It is very difficult to publicly proclaim your faith when there is such a negative vibe associated with “Christians”. Trust me I can relate.

    SOmeone once told me “You may be the only bible people will ever read” I wish more Christians would hold to that.

    • I love Johnny Cash!

      I don’t find it difficult to proclaim anything I believe in and I highly pity people who are so simple-minded they can’t see past what they hear on TV or what fanatics/tunnel visioned cult-like people do. That is just not my world and I refuse to be affected negatively by it.

      • good for you, I just find it tedious and boring to have to deal with people’s stupidity so I keep my opinions to myself. My husband said I have definitely mellowed with age.

      • Well we discussed already that in person I am generally quiet because most people talk to much and I’m more of a listener. As far as the blog, I haven’t gotten any trolling yet so it’s not a matter of mellowing with age. Honestly, I feel this blog is a safe haven for sharing my thoughts because I’m often meeting like-minds. Sometimes people don’t get it, yes; and sometimes people go way off topic and I have to either remind them to stay on topic or I just delete their comments. But on a whole, it’s definitely a good thing 🙂

      • I wasn’t really talking about blogging – I was talking in general. I would actually feel a little better blogging about such things if I leaned that way because you are right, you can delete those negative comments. And you can also state you opinions and thoughts without any interruptions, so it is a very different platform from face to face socializing. I have friends I know I can have intelligent, open conversations with, then there are other individuals I just don’t fell like wasting the effort or energy on.

      • Yeah, that’s exactly it — and so do I. I don’t go around blabbing about my faith or my political beliefs or being vegetarian or how happy I am in my marriage because there are so many miserable people in this world I’d rather keep to myself. I had a client who seemed so jealous of my marriage I wouldn’t even bring up my husband to him because he was so unhappy with his own wife. It’s like I didn’t have a choice whether I wanted to voice my opinion or not I simply wasn’t “allowed.”

        Of course I have trusted friends I can say anything I want to. Being around them and my husband is the absolute best. But that goes without saying. If someone didn’t have a few trusted friends then something is seriously wrong with them.

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