When he was a small boy, he had loved butterflies.
Oh, not to net and mount them, but to wonder at their designs and habits.
Now a grown man with his first son to be born in a few weeks, he found himself once again fascinated with a cocoon. He had found it at the side of the park path. Somehow the twig had been knocked from the tree and the cocoon had survived undamaged and still woven to the branch.
As he had seen his mother do, he gently protected it by wrapping it in his handkerchief and carried it home. The cocoon found a temporary home in a wide- top mason jar with holes in the lid. The jar was placed on the mantle for easy viewing and protection from their curious cat who would
delight in volleying the sticky silk between her paws.
The man watched. His wife's interest lasted only a moment, but he studied the silky envelope. Almost imperceptibly at first, the cocoon moved. He watched more closely and soon the cocoon was trembling with activity. Nothing else happened. The cocoon remained tightly glued to
and there was no signs of wings.
Finally the shaking became so intense, the man thought the butterfly would die from the struggle. He removed the lid on the jar, took a pen knife from his desk drawer, and carefully made a tiny slit in the side of the cocoon. Almost immediately, one wing appeared and then out stretched the other. The butterfly was free!
It seemed to enjoy its freedom and walked along the edge of the mason jar and along the edge of the mantle. But it didn't fly. At first the man thought the wings needed time to dry, but time passed and still the butterfly did not take off.
The man was worried and called up his neighbour who taught high school science. He told the neighbour how he had found the cocoon, placed it in a mason jar, and the terrible trembling as the butterfly struggled to get out. When he described how he carefully made a small slit in the cocoon, the teacher stopped him. "Oh, that is the reason. You see, the struggle is what gives the butterfly the strength to fly."
And so it is with us. Sometimes its the struggles in life that
strengthen our faith the most.
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
James 1:2-4 – Holy Bible