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Pastor’s Viewpoint: 01-07-17

Mary Ella and I have a few chickens, so I was really excited this week when I found out that chickens might be the mosquito repellent of the future! You know, of course, we’re battling the Zika virus and we all remember the battles of the past with malaria. What you might not know is 214 million people were infected with malaria in 2015. It seems the mosquito is quite the adversary.
Ninety per cent of the new cases of malaria are found in sub-Saharan Africa, so researchers from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and from Addis Ababa University went there to find out how mosquitos selected their victims. To make a long story short, they analyzed the mosquitoes’ stomach contents and found that humans are their favorite meal. Other animals were also on the menu, with one exception, chickens. For some reason, mosquitoes don’t like chickens, and, with the growing dangers of malaria and now the Zika virus, it’s important to continue their research and discover “why?” (Malaria Journal: July 21, 2016)
“Meanwhile, we’ve got our hands full continually thanking God for you, our good friends—so loved by God! God picked you out as his from the very start. Think of it: included in God’s original plan of salvation by the bond of faith in the living truth. This is the life of the Spirit he invited you to through the Message we delivered, in which you get in on the glory of our Master, Jesus Christ.” (2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17)
Maybe God created the chicken to provide us with eggs and meat… and a way to protect ourselves from deadly mosquitoes. We’ve all heard that martins can eat 2,000 mosquitoes/day; now we know they can, but they don’t. Martins feed 160’ to 500’ above the ground, so mosquitoes are less than three percent of their diet. Maybe someday, we’ll replace our martin houses with chicken houses?
Paul reminds the Thessalonians, God also had a plan to save us from the sin that so easy brings us down. For that, he sent his son Jesus to die for our sins on the cross and you are invited to “get in on the glory of our Master, Jesus Christ.” Now you ought to accept Jesus… and maybe buy a few chickens!

Pastor’s viewpoint is written by Charles ‘Buddy’ Whatley, a retired United Methodist pastor, a marketplace chaplain, and with Mary Ella, a missionary to the Navajo Reservation in Arizona.