I also thought it was interesting that the milkweed was poisonous to other creatures that ate it, but not when the caterpillar
digested it. In the Christian metamorphosis, before trusting Jesus to re-create us,
much of the meaning of the Bible is hidden from us, it is difficult to understand, and often
bitter to the taste, because we have not been transformed. Some will feel confused and refuse to
feed on God's Word.
Yet, after receiving Christ as Savior, we become hungry to read and hear the Word of GOD. Miraculously, we are able to digest the Word to grow and transform us into the new creature God has planned for us, to understand his plans for good, and not evil, for hope and a future. A Christian lives and grows by digesting the Word of GOD!
Those last facts about the Monarch butterfly, those marvelous outward changes, teach us about the new life of a Christian:
The eyes of the caterpillar changed from having 6 eyes looking in many directions, to having 2 eyes with 6,000 lenses each. And as a new Christian, we no longer have to look in so many places to find happiness. We can now see with sharper eyesight the things we should flee from---things that hurt us---and run to those things that will give us joy and please our Heavenly Father!
The caterpillar could only see in black and white. The butterfly changed to having the ability to see in color. As a Christian, we see things so much clearer and vivid as to where to go, what to do, and how to find JOY! Things we participated in or observed before our transformation didn't bother us at all. Yet, now our hearts break as a Christian, as we see what we never noticed before, such as seeing people do things that dishonor God or treat others cruelly. This may have been our way of life at one time, but now, we know it hurts God's heart and we no longer want to be around those things. We have better vision!
The caterpillar had a chewing mouthpiece. Before we became a Christian, we wasted words that came from our mouths; talking about others, complaining, and telling lies, just chewing words that were worthless and hurt others. But as a new creation, we have the ability to suck in God's Word, digest it well, and then share it with others. Our words find ways of encouraging and edifying. Our desire is to take in sweetness (like the butterfly's nectar) and give out sweetness by encouraging others. This is pleasing God!
A caterpillar with 16 legs has only the ability to crawl. But when it becomes a butterfly, though reduced to having 6 legs, there is the gain of four wings and the ability to fly! In our new lives as Christians we no longer crawl slowly, we have less to weigh us down, as Hebrews 12:1 says, "let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." We are much quicker to move in the direction God wants us to go. Jesus promises to never leave us or forsake us. This gives us courage and the ability to do so much more than we ever thought would be possible for our lives. We must trust him and his guidance; we can fly, fully trusting in Jesus. |
Don't you just love how our new life in Christ is pictured clearly for us in the life of the butterfly's metamorphosis? Take time to look closely at this amazing world, from the tiniest of things to the largest, there is more to discover in God's marvelous creation.
For the challenge: LOOK in the mirror. SEE YOU! See the beautiful creation you are, and the potential within you! Honor God in all things. Show God's beauty to others. Point them to the Creator, so they will find him too!
Copyright 2018 Emmalea Butler
*The English word, metamorphosis, is from the Greek word metamorphoo, meaning changed or transformed. This word is used in Scripture referring to Christ's transfiguration in Matthew 17:2 and Mark 9:2. It is also used in Romans 12:2 regarding transformation by the renewing of our minds as we grow in Christ. And then again in 2 Corinthians 3:18, referring to being transformed by the Holy Spirit into God's image. Interestingly, the term used for new creation in 2 Corinthians 5:17 is the Greek word, kitisis, meaning creation from nothing, and only God can create something from nothing! Being transformed into God's likeness is a miracle, we can't do it on our own. It is by grace we are saved through faith, not of ourselves, it is a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8).
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