Weekly Update – 19th May

All change! All change please!

Have you ever visited a butterfly house and seen these beautiful creatures up close and personal? I visited such a place several years ago in a park, where one of the star attractions was a butterfly house. There was the nursey where the caterpillars lived, eating leaves, and getting fat and happy. Then out in the main part of the butterfly house, there were huge, tropical butterflies. One or two of them were so big, that as they came towards me, I felt the need to duck out of the way in case they scored a direct hit. I needn’t have worried as I was perfectly safe, and their intentions were just to say “Hello”. The best moment of all was when a very big and beautiful butterfly landed on my head and sat on me for a bit, having a rest whilst I felt my insides explode with the sheer joy at the wonder of the moment. But there was one area of the enclosure, where there was a wooden cupboard and inside were rows of wooden rods from which were hanging the chrysalis. Each different breed of potential butterfly had a different shape and size not very beautiful but brown, knobbly, and crusty in appearance.  To get from fat caterpillar to beautiful butterfly, they had to change, and during the process of change, there is a time of waiting and being patient before their potential is realised.

Today is Pentecost Sunday and we remember the process of change that took place in the disciples of Jesus when the promised gift of the Holy Spirit came to them, enabled them, empowered them, and motivated them to set about the business of the Kingdom of Heaven. To continue this ministry, they needed to change and like the butterfly, they had been getting fed and happy living their lives with Jesus and learning from him, but now they needed another level of discipleship. Jesus had risen and returned to His Father after his death on the cross and it was a time of waiting for the promised helper that He had told them was coming. Like a chrysalis, they waited, together in an upper room, waiting, praying, resting in God. The “chrysalis” time for the disciples was that stage where they needed to wait for the change, waiting, and getting ready to realise their potential. Then when the Holy spirit came, suddenly, they were all soaring high, and everyone nearby saw this dramatic transformation as the disciples spilled out onto the street and were worshipping God, their “butterfly time.”

Sometimes change is not very pretty or seems to take forever but whether we like it or not, change comes along in our lives and it’s those “chrysalis“ times  where we wait patiently on God to act and gives us what we need for his plans for us. What happened in that upper room that day changed history, billions of lives and was the catalyst to populate Eternity.

Don’t let your faith be like a fat caterpillar, not moving much, eating, and never going to be able to fly unless you change and go through that process. God has plans for us to fly and flourish so we need to have those “chrysalis” times of waiting and wondering, faithfully being changed inwardly by the power of the Holy Spirit, sometimes a quiet, gradual transformation , a little change on the inside and sometimes a wonderful, overwhelming experience of the presence of God in our lives. Be a butterfly!

Have a good week.