lessons from the chickens

When I come home, my job is to feed the chickens.
To some of you, this might seem like an easy job.
But it's not.
Every time I feed the chickens, at least one of them gets out.
Then I have to get it back into the pen, which usually results in frustration.

Well, today, one got out.
As I was trying to get her back into the pen, she ran into this pile of junk, which is located next to the pen.
When she ran in there, I calmly (so it wasn't so calmly) said, "You're going to get hurt in there!" But she refused to come out, so I left her there for a while.

As I was walking back to the house, ever so grumpily, I thought of this story by Hugh B. Brown.

I kept going through my daily things, when I realized that I had left the chicken outside the pen for more than THREE hours. Kind of worried, I went outside and looked for her. When I didn't find her where I left her, I started thinking of all of the bad things that could have happened to her: she ran away, she got stuck farther in than I thought, she got eaten... and so on.

But then I saw the leaves of one of the pomegranate bushes move, so I went over there and found her hobbling along on one foot. Then I said, "See? I told you you would get hurt." When she saw me, she started running [the best she could] over to the door of the pen. When I got to the door, she waited for me to open it, and then as soon as it was open wide enough, she ran inside. Back to the safety of the pen.

 Which then in turn, reminded me of this story by Boyd K. Packer.

I realized today, that when we don't listen to the Spirit and we do something that could hurt us, or does hurt us, we yearn to get back into "the pen". Repentance is hard and takes time, but when we take the time to do it, we receive so many blessings in return. The fences in our lives aren't to hurt us, they are to protect us. When the Spirit speaks to us, we need to listen.

I am grateful for the opportunity I have to repent. I know that I am not perfect and that I make mistakes. I know that Christ is always there for me, in fact, He is always waiting for me to come back to Him. I know that my Savior loves me.