Are you running around with your head cut off?
Growing up, the Smiths, one of our dear friends, would turn their really cool white and blue swing-set into the (cue the slasher movie music) the Poultry Poles of Death!!
We could always tell that this time was coming, because Mrs Smith would move the swing-set over near the old tree stump. This meant that she could *whack* the head of the chickens off, throw them on the ground for a few moments and then hang them to “drain” from the bar across the top of the swing-set. (We INSISTED that she remove the swings before doing that!)
Grateful that she ALWAYS planned this event while we were at school, it came as a huge shock one day to arrive for a time of fun in the back yard to see that the swing-set…was M.O.V.E.D. (cue more slasher movie music!) Standing there, a strange contradiction, was tiny Mrs Smith. Armed with a massive knife and covered in a voluminous old butcher’s apron, here was my picture of urban chic preparing to WHACK off the heads of chickens! Mrs Smith, who got her hair done every Thursday afternoon, like clockwork, and re-did her nails on Saturday, whether she needed to or not. She stood smiling at me, blood spatters on the front of her apron. This was decidedly wrong in my world.
I had heard the Smith children talk about chickens running around with their heads cut off. I thought they were joking. (Especially because it was mostly the boys who teased me about it.) They were not. I saw, with my very own eyes, the freak show created by a dozen head-less chickens running about. They ran into one another – they ran toward us, with blood oozing … it was creepy….it was UNNATURAL!
Imagine my surprise when I’m reading in Ephesians 5 concerning Christ being the head of the Church and suddenly I have a flash back to those freaky chicken bodies! WOW! What a picture!
I realized that I had become very careless of how I think of that term, “body of Christ.” I have become careless of it, both in considering the implications of Christ as my Head – as well as me as His Body.
Whenever Scripture talks about Jesus feet – or His enemies being put under His feet – I don’t stop and go, “Oh! THAT’S ME!” Likewise when I read of the things that my Head is doing, I don’t stop and think, “Oh, Jesus is turning water into wine! I’m His BODY – wherever the Head is, the Body shall be found there as well, doing the actual work!”
I suspect that it’s this concept of Head and Body that Christ was thinking of when He said, “The works that I do, he will also do; and greater works than these he will do.” Jesus knew what this way of living was like. He told Philip, “If you have seen Me, you have seen My Father in heaven.” (DCV) In everything He did and everything He said, Jesus did only what His Head directed Him to do. Jesus never allowed His Head to wander about, disconnected from the Body. He made certain that He was perfectly and always connected to the Head.
As I have become aware of this habit to inadvertently think of Christ as a chicken – the Head removed from the Body – I have also committed to changing that. God told the Children of Israel – “I put before you life and death. Choose life.” I can’t think of anything that is more about choosing life than posturing myself to be growing ever attentive to all that the Head is doing, so that I, His Body am being obedient to go wherever My Head is going!