ONE day Henny-Penny was picking up corn in the cornyard when–whack!–something hit her upon the head. ‘Goodness gracious me!’ said Henny-Penny; ‘the sky’s a-going to fall; I must go and tell the king.’
So she went along and she went along and she went along till she met Cocky-Locky. ‘Where are you going, Henny-Penny?’ says Cocky-Locky. ‘Oh! I’m going to tell the king the sky’s a-falling,’ says Henny-Penny. ‘May I come with you?’ says Cocky-Locky. ‘Certainly,’ says Henny-Penny. So Henny-Penny and Cocky-Locky went to tell the king the sky was falling.
They went along, and they went along, and they went along, till they met Ducky-Daddles. ‘Where are you going to, Henny-Penny and Cocky-Locky?’ says Ducky-Daddles. ‘Oh! we’re going to tell the king the sky’s a-falling,’ said Henny-Penny and Cocky-Locky. ‘May I come with you?’ said Ducky-Daddles. ‘Certainly,’ said Henny-Penny and Cocky-Locky. So Henny-Penny, Cocky-Locky, and Ducky-Daddles went to tell the king the sky was a-falling.
I remember this story from my childhood, and it may seem right now that the sky IS falling. Without venturing into the technicalities of economics (which I took in high school and never really cared for), our nation is certainly seeing rough financial times, with very few people coming out completely unscathed.
While it certainly isn’t positive (although it may be tempting) to take the role of the ostrich and give ourselves a sand shampoo, I also have to remind myself not to become Henny-Penny. Hiding and worrying are, pun intended, for the birds. Rather, I am trying to calm myself with the knowledge that our God is here, amidst the financial chaos, reminding us that He will handle our worries and fears if only we will trust in Him. I don’t call it coincidence that much of our federal currency bears the motto “In God We Trust”.
I don’t want to be the one running to the king claiming the sky is falling. Rather I want to go running to my King. Running to Him and falling to my knees asking for his comfort and guidance.
It is a time to be especially frugal with the gifts He has bestowed on me, spending them wisely rather than foolishly. Being assured that God will provide for our needs, when we ourselves prayerfully take care of the gifts He has provided us.
I can’t run from reality (I know this because I’ve tried!). But as Eugene Peterson says in The Message, we should “steep ourselves in God-Reality”:
What I’m trying to do here is get you to relax, not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Don’t be afraid of missing out. You’re my dearest friends! The Father wants to give you the very kingdom itself. (Luke 12:29-32)
Lord of us all, help us not to be worried and overwhelmed by the issues of the day. Remind us to step back and give thanks for what we have, for it is truly a treasure, no matter how small it may seem to human eyes. Help us to relax in You and immerse ourselves in the reality of You. Give us the strength to believe that You will care for us just as you care for the sparrows, the lillies, and yes, even the Henny-Pennys of the world. Our needs will be met, we will be cared for, and we will come to see that our worries were all for naught.
Enthusiastic in our calmness…