“Keep your eyes on the sky!” This has become a regularly stated sentence in our home. More specifically, this has become a regular saying in our yard.
After losing a rooster to a hawk a couple of years ago, we take few chances with our chickens and ducks. Foraging times have become more supervised and reminding one another to look up has become more prevalent.
Sometimes it is difficult, I must admit. When two bird dogs are tracking rabbits and diving in the pool…when two ducks are standing on the edge of the pool threatening to jump in with the dogs…when five chickens are finding the juiciest worms…and when outdoor chores must get accomplished…Supervising must become more creative.
Oftentimes, two bird dogs are forced to stand watch over the flock while one of us takes care of the coop, garden, etc. Sometimes a row of bushes becomes a shelter from the predatory skies while a trek to the other side of the property is necessary.
Ideally, our birds would be hovered over by a human at all times. Realistically, our birds are hovered over by a human…or a dog, as often as possible.
It is not uncommon for our hens and ducks to protect themselves from overhead danger. I always know when something is flying over when I see a feathered head cocked to one side with an eyeball fixated on something above.
There are other times when I witness several feathered pals suddenly running toward the pen, the shed, the bushes, or a human. I look up at the sky, and sure enough, a red tail hawk is flying over. There are many times when one feathered pal cries out a warning and all other pals run for cover. Yes, chickens and ducks are smart enough to recognize danger and honorable enough to warn others.
It is no secret that roosters protect the flock. But now that our hens are bachelorettes (minus Walter, the duck) they have become professional security guards themselves. Between chasing the cricket, biting off some clover, and bathing in the dirt, our flock, including two spoiled ducks, keeps watch above. When danger lurks, they take refuge.
“The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.” – Proverbs 27:12
Prudent would be a good word to describe the instinctive flock in our back yard. Is prudent a word that describes you?
What kind of danger can you foresee. I’m not just talking about the obvious dangers that threaten our every day lives. How about the danger of indifference, lukewarm faith, or unwise choices? How about the danger of a volatile relationship or ignoring the advice of a Godly friend? Maybe the danger of living your life to build your own kingdom rather than the kingdom of God?
There are hopefully people in your life who can discern danger when you do not. Those friends who love you enough to speak truth into your life even when it is difficult…Even when they could risk losing you as a friend. The friend who sees something you do not and loves you enough to bring it into the light rather than hiding it in the shadows so as not to “offend” you. Yes, those are the friends that are truly friends. And those are the ones I want around to signal the warning call when a predator is flying over.
My advice? Keep your eyes on the sky. And when you hear a friend’s warning, be wise and take refuge.