Charlie started out his life in the usual barnyard way. As one of a group of white chicks in our hen house he was quickly claimed as “mine” and my sisters claimed theirs. As the chicks grew we discovered that Charlie was going to be a rooster. There were no problems in his childhood and he was raised right but it appeared in his teenage years that he was going to be a problem. 

          Charlie soon decided that he was King of the Universe, the Lord of all he surveyed. It made no difference that he had just arrived on a farm that belonged to someone else and the true owners fed him and ultimately held his life in their hands. His saber rattling and loud fits of bragging were just signs of what was to come. 

          Charlie soon began chasing his owner, me, and my sisters from the yard.  As some of you know, a rooster can become a formidable adversary with sideward dance moves, sharp spurs and flogging wings. Since I was only 5 years old at the time I was not willing to take him on.  He had effectively taken control of the yard by intimidation.

          My older sister and I still had chores that we were required to do regardless of a sinister rooster that viewed us a trespassers. So armed with a small board, my sister and I went out to feed the chickens. In the shed was a large sack of the feed and there was a large tin can used to measure out the amount that we would scatter about the yard. While in the shed filling the can we made the mistake of turning our backs. When we turned around we were scared out of our wits to see the white rooster charging in our direction and there was no question about his intentions.  My sister was always more athletic than I and her first response was to take the large can and throw it at the approaching rooster. Talk about a great shot! The can landed right down over his head and dumped the contents over him. This bit of luck startled Charlie long enough for us to escape back to the house. 

          Make no mistake, the story does not end there. The humiliation of a lucky shot landing from a couple of kids only made this bully bolder. He had a score to settle now. 

          Not too much later we kids were brave enough to venture out into the yard since our parents were out there with us. Surely this medium sized rooster would see that he was outnumbered and outsized and he would mind his P’s and Q’s.  Guess again.

          This time for a target he picked our baby sister, still in diapers, toddling about the yard as my mother was busy with some chore and my dad was working on some project. Charlie attacked from behind. He took to the air and landed on my sisters shoulders and began to peck and flog. All the screaming got my father’s attention. Charlie didn’t see our father approaching from behind. He continued to assault this little easy target thinking that he could do as he pleased. But Charlie’s end was coming.

          My father ran up from behind. Being an excellent athlete himself, my dad ran with precision and executed a perfect field goal style kick that sent Charlie on an arching path high into the air, across the clothes line and landing with a crashing blow. And to our utter amazement Charlie never moved a muscle. Not a wiggle or a twitch. We were used to seeing chickens that would run or flop after being beheaded by my grandmother so to see a chicken take a blow that left it completely motionless was a sight to behold. 

          The reign of terror was ended with that one swift kick that left King Charlie as a ruined pile of feathers. My grandmother took what was left of Charlie and made chicken and dumplings. 

          The Bible tells us that Satan has taken over this barnyard we live in. He is ruling with an iron fist. He is looking for easy targets and he is manipulating every opportunity. Sometimes all we can do is to just stay away.  But the Bible also tells us that even though Satan knows the end of the story he is just like Charlie the rooster. It’s as though he doesn’t even see our Father coming. His end will be swift.  There will be no struggle. It will be final. Chicken and dumplings.