I have been thinking a lot about change. But not just change like changing your clothes or your hair color. I have been thinking about transformation. A change so significant that what once was is no more. Like a chemical change. Being changed from the very depth of my being.
Like a caterpillar becoming a butterfly. What does one have to do with the other? How different they are! They look different, they function differently. One day a round, wingless, multi-legged, crawling, worm-like creature. And then the transformation into a sleeker, winged, delicate, colorful, flying, flower-like creature.
As I understand it, I am undergoing a transformation. I will change from a person who puts self first, who thinks she knows more than anyone else, who hurts others, into a person who puts others first, who is humble, who brings healing. A person who resembles God.
Sometimes it seems impossible. How can I be transformed into a person like Jesus?
But there it is. We know caterpillars do transform into butterflies. They go into their cocoons and undergo the most amazing transformation imaginable.
Reflect on this. That is some significant body changing going on. That’s not a makeover, that is total body reconstruction. Almost like dying and being reborn as something totally different.
I wonder, does it hurt?
I personally find the transformation process to be a painful experience. The self, the flesh, the old nature dying and me being reborn as someone entirely different, someone like Jesus. Self dies hard. In my mind self dying looks like that scene at the end of the second terminator movie, in which the second terminator is in the molten steel, and he thrashes around fighting it to the last.
I thrash around too.
So I look at the butterfly and wonder, does it hurt?
I think it must.
But, wow, was it worth it.
Just a thought of how limiting it is to be a caterpillar and how much more God wants to give it, wings to soar anywhere it desires. Our transformation is much the same…”but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isiah 40:31
Great reminder Robin. When Jesus calls us, he bids us come and die! Not a happy thought, but the most important invitation of our lives.
Come and die. That’s really what he says isn’t it? Haven’t seen that in needle point on anyone’s wall. I should make one.
It’s a tough sell, unless the one calling you is the source of life.
I am grateful for the caterpillar/butterfly example of what it means to die and yet live, to lose our life to gain life.
Beautiful words, Jill Taylor…
Just a thought… about being a new person…your mother/father makes you a daughter, your daughter makes you a grandmother…so doesn’t it fit that Jesus makes us who we are rather than we making ourselves into… perhaps what we think Jesus wants us to be…
Spot on Karen. I am not directing the transformation, just submitting to it. Wanting it, wanting to want his will over mine.
I relate to the “tough sell” part as well as all the pain parts too. I’m not so sure about transformation. Most days, it feels more like 1 step forward and 3 steps back. Half the time I wonder why God would want anything to do with the likes of me. However, I’m grateful that he has made himself known to me, and keeps doing so. I cherish the Bible. God shouts at me from its pages. I think gratitude is the word that most captures my view about faith.