Do you remember the little red hen? She asked for help in sowing grain,
harvesting the wheat,
and making bread.
Her lazy companions couldn't be bothered to help, and dismissed every request with a "Not I!"
"Very well, I will" she said. And she did.
But when the bread was baked and fragrant, she taunted them and asked who would eat the bread. "I will!" each volunteered.
"Oh, no you won't" she said. And she ate it herself.
My husband hates the little red hen in me. I share her enthusiasm for the rewards of hard work, and the need for personal responsibility. Ask my grown daughters. They'll tell you that I forced them to do their own laundry when they were too small to reach the controls on the machine. It's a blatant exaggeration, I waited until they were at least 9.
The hen's philosophy is a lopsided parenting strategy, but I didn't raise lazy princesses. My girls are independent and, somehow, generous. That must have come from their father. And their Father.
The little red hen and I share a stingy streak. Happy relationships need a balance of responsibility and mercy. God has given us the responsibility to live up to His perfect standard. And because we can't, He gives us mercy through Jesus.
May I offer you a slice of bread?