The Hen

Immediately I saw this one of Stanley Spencer’s paintings, I thought of these words of Jesus:

37 Jerusalem, Jerusalem! Your people have killed the prophets and have stoned the messengers who were sent to you. I have often wanted to gather your people, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings. But you wouldn’t let me. (Matthew 23:37)

Jesus longs to gather the people as a hen gathers her chicks, and they won’t let him.

Here we have Jesus gathering the hen itself.

It looks as though with his body he has built a wall around them – a defence, a shelter, a safe place.  A couple of the chicks are happily exploring, safe in his protection.  One is trying out its wings, seeing if it can fly.  Such is the protection Jesus gives us.  It is not suffocating and stifling – but it would keep one of those foxes away!

There are other hens wandering the wilderness, but this one has chosen to stay within Jesus’ surrounding arms.

mother hen

I’ll go on to see what Stephen Cottrell has to say.

These thoughts are reflecting on Stanley Spencer’s painting The Hen (seen here).

This year for Lent, I am reading Christ in the Wilderness by Bishop Stephen Cottrell, published by SPCK, reflecting on Stanley Spencer’s paintings of that title.

I’m not necessarily going to blog every day on it, just when something leaps out at me – and they will be thoughts rather than full blog posts

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