Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: FERHOODLE (confuse or mix-up) (03/03/16)
TITLE: The Chicken or the Egg?
By Francy Judge
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Angie said the egg. Jacob said the egg. Brian said the chicken. Mr. Thompson said he wasn’t sure. I was surprised he didn’t have the answer since he was the teacher.
I think God created the chicken first because an egg might break…then there wouldn’t be a first chicken. And without a first chicken there wouldn’t be any eggs to make more chickens. But that doesn’t work either. One chicken couldn’t make an egg. God would have to make two chickens to make an egg. And if the egg came first, it would have to be two eggs so there could be two chickens to make another egg. But two eggs would have twice the chance of breaking.
I asked Mom for paper. Mom used to have blond hair close to the color of the chicks. That was before she got sick, but I don’t want to talk about that. I must look like my father since I never matched Mom. Dark, curly hair and coffee skin. Mom said he went to war and never came back. That’s how Mom and I are alike—we both have stories we don’t like to remember.
“You’re thinking of schoolwork on your summer vacation? I’m impressed.” Mom was called Julie by everyone other than me. She didn’t smile much, but when she did, I smiled back. I liked how she smelled of chicken feed and lilacs.
I told her no, the paper wasn’t for schoolwork. I lifted a chick and stroked its fluffy feathers.
“So why do you need it?”
I’m going to write a letter.
“It would be faster to email.”
No. A mailed letter looks important.
Grandma opened the barn door and passed me a pail of feed. I asked her if she knew which came first.
“Max, how would I know that? I wasn’t there when God made chickens.” She huffed and shuffled back to the house.
I punched my head because I felt jumbled and couldn’t get an answer.
“It’s okay. Don’t hurt yourself. Where are you going to send the letter?”
Pastor Mike…so he can ask God.
“Okay, you write it, and I’ll mail it tomorrow.”
Turned out Mom’s sickness got worse. She had a heart attack the same day she mailed my letter.
Grandma fumbled for a tissue in her purse, wiped her eyes and blew her nose. She held my hand as the casket was carried to the front of our church.
Pastor Mike answered my question. “I received a letter asking me if I knew which came first the chicken or the egg. I’ve heard the question before, but this time I prayed the Lord would show me something new. God says He created the first man and woman. He didn’t create babies to grow up, instead he created them to reproduce life. In my mind it makes sense that he would do the same for animals. He created chickens with the ability to make more chickens. That’s my opinion. Some things we’ll never know for sure until we see God face to face. Why did he take Julie from this life while so young? We don’t know, but we have to trust God. He loves her and has brought her to a better place.”
I didn’t hear much more of the funeral after that, but I thought about Mom and how she hated when I hit my head. So I stopped.
As we walked home, Grandma held my hand. She knew I didn’t like hugs. “Your mom loved you so much. I could use some help with the farm now. Do you think you can do that?”
I didn’t go into the house for two days after the funeral. Grandma brought me a blanket and food and sat with me and the chickens. As we searched for constellations among the billions of stars, I remembered something. You know Grandma…Pastor Mike agreed with me. He thinks the chicken came first.
Nothing makes sense, but I hope Mom asked God which came first. And I hope she’s happy.
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