Monday, September 26, 2011
A few days ago I found this Swallowtail caterpillar on a walk. I placed it in a jar with some parsley and dill, a Swallowtail larva's favorite food.The next day I looked in on my caterpillar and was disappointed to see it curled dead at the bottom of the jar.
"Oh well," I thought. "It must have been too late in the year for this little guy to make it." For some reason, though, I left the caterpillar, lifeless, at the center of the table. Imagine my surprise a few days later to see a perfectly formed chrysalis at the bottom of the jar!
I was so excited, I began shouting to the children, to anyone who could hear, that "The caterpillar isn't dead after all! It formed a chrysalis!!! " Oliver said, "Well, Mom, you must have been expecting something to happen; otherwise, why would you have left a dead caterpillar as the centerpiece of our dining room table?"
Why? Was I hoping? Do I dare to think that I had hope, that I hadn't given up on life?
Why would I leave death to look upon? How could something dry and dead inspire? But that is the mystery for the Christian: death enfolds life. Just when life seems the most bleak, just when you're ready to curl up like that caterpillar at the bottom of the jar...there is victory in the wings.
You may be ready to call it quits. You may be wondering what it's all for. You may not know the reason for even your own existence. But God's plans for you and for your life are as alive as the caterpillar, lying limp and motionless, awaiting the miracle. Sometimes life breathes fullest in a grave of quiet, lungs heaving in solitude. All seems lost, but with each deep and painful breath God works an amazing transformation that restores life.
Will you let Him do that? Will you have faith? Can you let what seems dead in your life remain the centerpiece, knowing that He is going to work a miracle far surpassing your expectations?
"However, as it is written: No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him'--" (1Corinthians 2:9)
"I alone know the plans I have for you, plans to bring you prosperity and not disaster, plans to bring about the future you hope for. " (Jeremiah 29:11)