A man had been observing a chrysalis attatched to the window of his shed for several days, wondering when the entombed butterfly would eventually break out. One day he noticed the process was imminent and he sat down to observe the final stages of the metamorphosis. He watched the creature struggle to break free and in his ignorance, decided to aid it’s emancipation. He took a pair of scissors and snipped the cocoon. The once enclosed creature flopped pathetically to the ground and died. The man had not understood that the process of the struggle was a vital part of the metamorphosis. The enzymes had finished their miracle of change and creation, but the breaking out process is necessary to complete the final stage as the butterfly’s veins are inflated with fluid. The creature was denied it’s final struggle by God’s design and it’s destiny was aborted by man’s interference.
Hebrews 11:4 exhorts us : “Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest”. Have you ever found yourself struggling not to struggle? In the natural, we do not like to find ourselves in tight corners. Our independent hearts will try to fight our way out of these places, but the change that is necessary here takes place when we surrender our corner to Jesus, allowing us to be transformed by His life in us. Romans 12: 1-2 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God”. The struggles and tight corners in our lives are the places where the gold of God is formed, to His glory, in the trials of our faith. As we meet God in these places, bowing our understanding, these tight corners, (strongholds of our resistance), are broken down. Our minds are renewed in Christ and we are forever changed to climb higher with the Lord leading the way. Jesus is with us in our struggles and makes a way through with Him.
Sometimes the living sacrifice God requires is for us to surrender our understanding. It is so inferior to God’s. God declares in Isaiah 55:8-9 that His ways and thoughts are so much higher and superior to ours, because His knowledge of all things surpasses ours.
Proverbs 3: 5-7 is always current. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and LEAN NOT TO YOUR OWN UNDERSTANDING. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes, fear the Lord and depart from evil”.
In times of testing, give the Lord pre-eminence. Stick to what He has said. Allow Him to be the first voice and have the last word. Ignore the other voices that seek to control our lives and scream defiance to God’s voice in our being. The devil is dependent on us believing lies for him to be effective in our lives, destroy our faith in God and cause us to take wrong direction. As we “acknowledge God in ALL our ways, He will direct our paths”. Our heavenly Father cannot deny His word. But the criteria for this is “not to lean on our own understanding”. This is not something to struggle with when we don’t understand, but it is important to recognise it as holy ground. God is at work here and I must bow. As I surrender to Him, taking off the shoes of my understanding, spiritual metamorphasis takes place and the life of God’s Son, empowers and enables me to live this Christian life. Abundant life is my birthright. Humility is key to my inheritance. “Be not wise in your own eyes……”
Photo by Alfred Schrock on Unsplash