THE HEN WHO DEFEATED THE FOX
34 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. 35 Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’
As Jesus tells of his mission to head to Jerusalem, he fills with emotion for the estranged children of God. Jerusalem should be the holy city where the Father is found in the streets. Instead, it is filled with those who have left home and forgotten their blessing.
He is not a fox ready to devour the vulnerable citizens of the holy city. He is a nurturing, mother-like hen feeling the urgency to gather the chicks under wing. Jesus desires to protect people from the storm of evildoers.
So many have painted Jesus as a fox-- a political animal trying to overthrow Rome and Judaism. This is no such animal. Jesus has the heart of a mother who will do anything to save the children.
We know the Easter story. Jesus was devoured by many foxes (including Herod). Like a hen he had no apparent defense against the devourer.
But Easter tells us that the hen ultimately defeated the fox. The resurrection of Jesus Christ following his execution still comes as an inescapable surprise to those who prefer God in a grave. The Easter story tells us that real power is expressed not by ferocity and oppression, but sacrifice and love. The greatest show of power is a refusal to retaliate. No ‘eye for an eye’ will ever open blind eyes.
If you have ever loved someone you could not protect, then you understand the depth of Jesus’ lament. All you can do is open your arms. You cannot make anyone walk into them.
Meanwhile, this is the most vulnerable posture in the world --wings spread, breast exposed -- but if you mean what you say, then this is how you stand.
Jesus won’t be king of the jungle in this or any other story. What he will be is a mother hen, who stands between the chicks and those who mean to do them harm. She has no fangs, no claws, no rippling muscles. All she has is her willingness to shield her babies with her own body. If the fox wants them, he will have to kill her first. ( http://www.religion-online.org/showarticle.asp?title=638 )
This is what the foxes and wolves of humanity have repeatedly done. They have killed the prophets, martyred the saints and crucified Jesus. In this story, Jesus laments to the vulnerable citizenry. How he longs to gather them under his wing and shield them, but they refuse.
Have you heard his lament? Have you been gathered under the Lord’s wing? That is his heart’s cry for you.