Friday, April 28, 2006

Clipped Wings of Growth

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”(2 Corinthians 4:16-18 NKJ)

A man once found a cocoon of the emperor moth and took it home to watch it emerge. One day a small opening appeared, and for several hours the moth struggled but couldn’t seem to its body past a certain point.

Deciding something was wrong, the man took scissors and snipped the remaining bit of cocoon. The moth emerged easily, its body large and swollen, the wings small and shriveled.

He expected that in a few hours the wings would spread out in their natural beauty, but they did not. Instead of developing into a creature free to fly, the moth spent its life dragging around a swollen body and shriveled wings.

The constricting cocoon and the struggle necessary to pass through the tiny opening are God’s way of forcing fluid from the body into the wings. The “merciful” snip was, in reality, cruel.

Sometimes the struggle is exactly what we need.

Spiritual Maturity is being able to look at yourself with divine perspective and know what is needed, why it is needed, how it is needed, and then actually does the what, why and how.


 What are some things you’ve discovered in your walk with God that are imperative for you to participate in on a consistent bases to continue to be challenged, transforming and spiritually alive?

 What’s your strategy for making these effectual realities in your daily walk with God?

 Have you shared these things with anyone else? How might doing so enhance your desired result?

“But we who would be born again indeed,
must wake our souls unnumbered times a day.”
George MacDonald

Too often people think about their “spiritual lives” as just one aspect of their existence, alongside and significantly separate from other aspects of their lives such as their “financial lives” or their “vocational lives.” Periodically they try to “get their spiritual lives together” by praying more regularly or trying to master another spiritual disciple. It is the religious equivalent of going on a diet or trying to stick to a budget.

The truth is that the term spiritual life is simply a way of referring to one’s life – every moment and facet of it – from God’s perspective. Another way of saying it is this: God is not interested in your “spiritual life.” God is just interested in your life. He intends to redeem it.

Recommended Reading

The Life You’ve Always Wanted, John Ortberg
A Hidden Wholeness, Parker Palmer
Velvet Elvis, Rob Bell

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