My wife had placed a small, plastic terrarium on the coffee bar a couple of weeks back. It contained a couple of sticks, and what looked like parsley. I called into the living room, “Hey… what’s with the box o’ parsley?” “Look closer,” was her reply. So I did. Hmm. Caterpillars. Three of them. “Okay, so what’s with the box of parsley… and caterpillars?”
Apparently, after spending time in a friend’s flower garden, Tammy became fascinated with the idea that these chubby, sluggish caterpillars could become the beautiful butterflies she saw fluttering around the blooming plants.
So we watched, as the three caterpillars ate their way through what seemed like a laundry basket full of parsley! And eventually, the glued themselves to the sticks and began to transform into the chrysalis… an ugly stage where they would begin the transformation process.
And after a couple of weeks, crawling out of that ugly husk of the chrysalis… came a brand new… beautiful butterfly. Once, twice… three times we watched this process. And it never failed to amaze me. A COMPLETE transformation! If you didn’t already know about this process, you’d never believe that the graceful, colorful butterfly was related to that chubby worm.
It occurred to me, as we were sitting on our porch watching these butterflies try out their new wings, that this is what happens to us when we’re ‘born again’ in Christ. We may still look like our old selves on the outside, but inside, we’ve made a complete transformation!
And I wonder, even though that butterfly is SO different now… does she sometimes still think of herself as a caterpillar? Does she ever forget that she has WINGS??? As believers, I think we forget… sometimes… about the remarkable transformation that’s taken place in our lives… 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here!”
It would be silly, tragic even, for that amazing butterfly to spend its time inching along a parsley leaf, when it could be flying in the breeze, soaking in the sun. It would also be tragic for us to fail to live up to our own transformation…