People like to compare someone who’s struggling to a butterfly emerging from its cocoon. You know, all about how the struggle makes you stronger and the end result is something beautiful, and all that inspiring stuff. But I was thinking… With butterflies it’s a one-time deal.
I think people are more like cicadas. You know, like this beautiful creature. Starting out as an ugly little grubby thing that digs in the dirt and through a succession of painful molts in a process that can take years and years, they slowly transform into something beautiful. (At least, I think cicadas are gorgeous. I suppose some people would disagree…) They don’t undergo a miracle transformation. They undergo a series of small transformations that culminate finally in beauty.
Humans don’t undergo a miracle transformation either. We change slowly, molting again and again and slowly becoming less of the ugly little grubby thing that digs in the dirt. Sometimes the changes hurt, like we’re being torn in two, but then we realize that it was really just our constricted exoskeleton exploding and letting us out to grow some more. Every molt is progress, but it’s not enough to be content with just one or two or three. We have to keep growing, keep changing for the better. Because when humans and cicadas transform into something glorious, it always happens through a long process. This is probably out of context, but it reminds me of Philippians 3:20-21:
But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like His glorious body, by the power that enables Him even to subject all things to himself.
We’re being made beautiful. Don’t lose heart when the molting hurts; you’re being transformed into something glorious. 🙂