I have this fascination with butterflies. I especially love the Monarch. Papa God has talked to me about them. He knows how much I love them. I think He put that love in me because He knew He would use them to speak to me.
A couple of weeks ago we were visiting the Tennessee Aquarium’s butterfly room. As I walked in and moved about, my eye caught different types of butterflies. Instantly I began snapping pictures. They are so exquisite and individual in their beauty. Beautiful blue morph’s, swallowtails, painted ladies and buckeyes flitted around me. Though mesmerized by these beauties what I really wanted to see and capture was my Monarch.
I perused the room as I walked around, straining to catch a glimpse. Suddenly a beautiful Monarch flew above me. I began to follow it. As if to tantalize me, it would fly down, catch my eye, then disappear, soaring above the flowers. It was not to be captured. It was free. After several minutes of waiting, I realized there would be no picture. Disappointed, I had no idea that there was a purpose in my not capturing the photograph, but Jesus did.
As I read another chapter of Alicia Britt Chole’s book, “Anonymous” her words hit me yet again. She said, *“Jesus’ hidden years empowered Him to live a fruitful life.” As I sat with Jesus journaling my heart, tears of gratitude poured down my cheeks. It was then that my eyes were opened and I could see. In these years of winters, deserts and wildernesses a transformation had come.
All of a sudden I could see what these hidden years have done for me. Once a woman who sought value in what I could do, I realized that I have come to a place of rest in who I am. Sobs of joy engulfed my body as I came to the awareness of what Jesus had done in me. I am at rest. I am free. The bondage of performance has been stripped away and now I just want to be. I understand now that I am not made to imitate Jesus. I am made for His life to be lived through me. I can rest. It is His work in me. This realization that I have moved from striving to rest, is indescribable.
The butterfly that could not be captured surfaces in my mind again. It’s clear to me now the picture Papa God wanted me to capture that day. It wasn’t of His beautiful Monarch in a photograph. It was the flight of this exquisite creature’s freedom. Lighting on a flower, flitting down to dance in front of my eyes, soaring to the top again, just being a butterfly, was a picture of what Jesus had done in me.
It was then I heard His voice, “You delight me, Jewel.” “Just as you were delighted when you saw that Monarch, I delight in seeing you.” “The way you chased it down to see it; that’s me with You.” “You loved watching it fly about and got so excited when it came close to you.” “That’s me with you Jewel.” “I love watching you fly free in your beauty.” “I delight in watching you just be who you were created to be.” “Enjoy what you see, and where you are.” “Spread your wings and fly above.” “You are free to be.”
Had I captured that butterfly in the photograph that day I would not have this picture seared into my heart. His purposes show up everywhere. With gratitude I thank Him for not allowing me to catch the Monarch down close. He has allowed me see through His eyes and capture His picture. What was once a disappointment has now turned into precious delight. I see His heart. I see His new creation in me, a picture worth more than a thousand words.
What about you? Do you see His delight in you? Do you see Him chasing you down, watching you fly in all your beauty? Do you see yourself through His eyes?
Therefore if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.
*Quote from: Alicia Britt Chole, "Anonymous"
©copyrighted 2008 by Julie L. Todd