Once upon a time in the long, long ago the Eagle and The Chicken were very good friends. One day while flying, the Chicken said to the Eagle:  “Let’s drop down and get a bite to eat.  My stomach is growling.”  “Sounds like a good idea to me,” replied the Eagle.  So the two birds glided down to earth, saw several animals eating, and decided to join them.  The Cow was busy eating corn, but noticed that the Eagle and the Chicken were soon sitting on the ground next to her.  “Welcome,” said the Cow.  “Help yourself to the corn.”

This took the two birds by surprise.  They were not accustomed to having other animals share their food quite so readily.  “Why are you willing to share your corn with us?” asked the Eagle.  “Oh, we have plenty to eat here.  Mr. Farmer gives us all we want,” replied the Cow.  With that invitation, the Eagle and The Chicken jumped in and ate their fill.  When they finished, the Chicken asked more about Mr. Farmer.  “Well,” said the Cow, “he grows all our food.  We don’t have to work for the food at all.”

“You mean,” said the Chicken, “that Mr. Farmer simply gives you all you want to eat?”  “That’s right,” said the Cow.  “Not only that, but he gives us a place to live.”  The Chicken and the Eagle were shocked!  They had always had to search for food and work for shelter.

When it came time to leave, the Chicken and the Eagle began to discuss the situation.  “Maybe we should just stay here,” said the Chicken.  “We can have all the food we want without working.  And that barn over there sure beats those nests we have been building.  Besides, I’m getting tired of always having to work for a living.”

“I don’t know about all this,” said the Eagle.  “It sounds too good to be true.  I find it hard to believe that one can get something for nothing.  Besides, I kinda like flying high and free through the air.  And providing for food and shelter isn’t so bad.  In fact, I find it quite challenging.”

Everything went fine for the Chicken.  He ate all he wanted.  He never worked.  But then one day he heard the farmer say to his wife that the preacher was coming to visit the next day and they should have fried chicken for dinner.  Hearing that, the Chicken decided it was time to check out and rejoin his good friend Mr. Eagle.  But when he attempted to fly he found that he had grown too fat and lazy.  Instead of being able to fly, he could only flutter.  So the next day the farmer’s family and the preacher sat down to fried Chicken.

When you give up the challenges of life in pursuit of “security,” you may give up your freedom.

*(I’ve never been able to identify an author for this story, and have taken the liberty to modify it over the years.)

From the Bible: 

“A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and your poverty will come like a robber, your need, like a bandit.”  Proverbs 24: 33-34 (HCSB)

Direction for Today:

Where in your life has the temptation of “security” led you to a potential trap?

Dan Miller is President of The Business Source, founder of "48 Days" and author of 48 Days To The Work You Love and 48 Days To Creative Income. He is the growing authority for creating effective life plans that are achieved by integrating natural gifts, unique personality traits and one's own values and passions. His unique clarification of how God gifts us will introduce you to a new sense of freedom and fulfillment of your life's calling. For more information, visit http://www.48days.com/.