Today this came across my newsfeed, “The Butterfly does not look back at the caterpillar in shame, just as you should not back at your past in shame. Your past was part of your transformation.”
In our daily lives we find we spend way too much time revisiting the past. We feel we have to drag it around like a ball and chain and hold on to it like a bad participating trophy. We use it to beat ourselves up with when we fall on our faces. We make it define who we are instead of who we became and where we are going. Unlike the butterfly who once is released from the cocoon flies away and never looks back. It never thinks about who it was before it was transformed into a butterfly.
Nature gives us so many examples of how to let go of the past and to move on with what we have today. Nature never looks back; it just moves forward. It never thinks about what happened five minutes ago. It doesn’t dwell on those things which it cannot change. It is not defined by its past, even though it has defining moments. Without the transformation from caterpillar to butterfly there would be no future. It would still be just a caterpillar following the same path it started on. The beauty would be lost, the freedom to fly would not happen.
Dare to be a butterfly. Dare to step out and up. Dare to leave the past where it belongs. Dare to fly.
I just read an interesting statement. It went something like this “You are free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of that choice.” This is something I have said to my children since the day they were old enough to understand the spoken word.
As we think about the things that are currently being discussed within our family, we must prayerfully think about all the possible consequences both intended and unintended. Sometimes when we are in the trenches of a decision, we tend to look past what we think is right or what we believe we should accomplish.
While I am a creative person and think with the right side of my brain, I also tend to think on the logic side due to the OCD factor. I will analyze a problem from all sides in a non-emotional way. The reason is simple with my background, if it walks like a duck, talk like a duck and looks like a duck, it is a duck.
When Jesus was brought before Pilot, the crowd had already been whipped into a frenzy due to emotion and not logic. Yes, it was pre-ordained, however, there was no logic involved, it was all emotion.
In major decisions no matter if it is in personal, business or even spiritual, it must be met with logic and detailed thought processes.
Yes, we are free to choose, but we are not free from the consequences intended or non-intended. I ask that much prayer and study and thought both pro and con go into the process. That all emotion be removed, and that logic is used to reach a decision that is scriptural, beneficial and meets the needs of all involved. This is not about one person, one opinion or even one act. This decision will affect this family for years to come.
“I was at the grocery store this morning and heard a loud crash and something shattering. Being nosy, I walked towards the sound and saw some people whispering and looking back to the end of the next aisle. When I walked down that aisle, I saw an older lady had hit a shelf containing dishes with her cart and many had fallen to the ground and broke. She was kneeling on the floor embarrassed, frantically picking up the shattered pieces, while her husband was peeling off the bar code from each broken dish saying, “Now we will have to pay for all this!”
I felt so bad for her, and everyone was just standing there staring at her!! I went and knelt beside her and told her not to worry and started helping her pick up the broken pieces. After about a minute, the store manager came and knelt beside us and said, “Leave it, we will clean this up. Let’s get your information so you can go to the hospital and have that cut on your hand looked at.”
The lady, totally embarrassed said, “I need to pay for all this first.” The manager smiled, helped her to her feet and said, “No ma’am, we have insurance for this, you do not have to pay anything!”
I have read this story many times and it never fails to send its message to me.
We are all broken. And yet, we pay no price for our repairs. That price has already been paid. We just have to accept the check and take the action of putting it in the bank. We will never be able to repay the bill. However, we can invest in the account. No matter our age, educational level, or experience or lack thereof, we can and must invest in the account, because we are no longer broken.
If we look around us, at nature, from the plant life to the animal kingdom, to the sky above us we see a balance. Everything has a place, a purpose and a beginning and an end. Everything depends on the other for not only survival but balance.
When we look at man, sadly, the same thing is not true. There is no balance even though the design is already there. We overwork, overeat, over think, over everything. We destroy that which should take care of us. We do not replenish those things we use. We waste those things which we should cherish and we horde those things which can, and most times do us harm. We are not cautious in our lives, nor do we learn from our bad decisions.
How many of us use these phrases in conversation and don’t even realize that we have made the statements, “Someday, I will…. Someday I want to…., Someday I need too.. Somebody needs to…. Someody should….” And the list goes on.
I too have been caught up in the same wheel of phrases. It was a lesson learned in a very hard way. I found out the somedays ran out, the Somebodies were me. I had to find balance. I had to understand that everyone has the same 24 hours in their lives. How we manage those 24 hours is where we either find our balance or make it off balance.
As we start a new year, may we make it a goal to find balance, to understand that someday is now, that some one is us.
In the study of Jezebel, we learned that while she was an evil, cunning, powerful and manipulative person who worshiped an idol, she was grounded in her faith. So grounded that she killed those she could not convert.
The point is this, how many of us are so grounded in our faith that we have tunnel vision. We truly believe in God and his divine power. A faith so strong it cannot be shaken. A faith that can be seen by others in our daily lives. A faith so strong that no one can doubt it.
While Jezebel, was a worshipper of an idol, she lived her faith. She stood by it and even died because of it. Yes, she was cruel, she was a non- believer in God, she taunted the prophet. But she believed.
The lesson I personally took from our study was it takes courage to stand up for one’s faith. It takes strength to withstand the storms of life and it takes knowledge to understand when we are wrong and are willing to change. Jezebel had all those tools and yet she refused to place her faith in the right place. The end results were she not only lost her husband in battle; she lost her own life by the very hands of her servants who threw out of a window.
Let’s learn from her mistakes. Let us keep our faith in God and his love for us, his plan and his vision. Let each of us stay grounded in our faith unshaken and unmovable.