After an unseasonably warm start to winter, the temperature dropped to five degrees last night.
As the children prepared for school, my thoughts went to the chickens and I knew their water would be frozen and I would soon be stepping outside to carry some down. Sometimes I dread it. Most times I send one of the kids. Today I couldn’t wait to go myself.
I put on a dark purple down coat, a neon orange stretch hat, gloves and boots. I was smiling. A New Englander through and through, I loved the sound of my quick stepping boots crunching and squeaking lightly over the frozen grass. My the tip of my nose was numb and my cheeks burned in the icy wind.
I thought about the essay I read by Rose Wilder Lane about her frustration that in her opinion, her mother Laura was a “slave to hens”.
Laura must have been smiling at times on her way to the coop, too. I poured hot water over the the feed, making a sort of “oatmeal”. She did the same, on a much grander scale. She loved caring for her flock and took pride in the fact that in their community, she was the only one who kept them producing eggs even in the dead of winter. They were happy, nurtured, cared for. One of the several definitions for the word “slave” is “a person who is strongly influenced and controlled by something.”
I suppose we are a slave (albeit willingly) when we serve someone or something in such a sacrificial way, from our God, our husbands and children, to our community, to our animals, our careers…….it’s not a bad thing. It’s beautiful, especially when it is done with love.
Do everything in love 1 Corinthians 16:14
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends John 15:13
Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord. Each morning I bring my requests to you and wait expectantly. Psalm 5:3
With one hand holding my camera and the other holding my coat sleeve over my frozen nose, I took these pictures for you, this morning.