January 10th, 2018 — IGNITE

I know we all wish life could be smother at times. We hope the next turn around the bend will take us on a flat track, instead of all the hills and valleys we’ve been taking. I don’t know about you, but there are times it seems that challenges come in pairs and as soon as I’ve conquered one situation, the next one is right there, demanding an answer or a decision. Sometimes it’s almost hard to catch my breath. I just want everything to slow down so I can catch up.

You probably know what I’m about to tell you, but it serves as a good reminder to all of us. A butterfly just isn’t born beautiful and soaring through the air. No, the butterfly starts as a tiny egg. That tiny eggs grows into a caterpillar. That caterpillar only has one job in life and that’s to eat. And those little creatures are good at what they do.

They eat for a purpose. You see, when they’ve eaten enough and reached their full weight, they then create a chrysalis, hang upside down inside of it, until the appropriate time. While they’re in there something happens called metamorphosis, which means this caterpillar is losing is old sluggish body and miraculously turning into a beautiful sleek butterfly. From the outside, you can’t see any of that. But from the inside, a miracle is taking place.

When that caterpillar has finally done all it can do, the butterfly now starts to escape from its entrapment. If you’ve ever watched the great escape, you notice the butterfly is struggling, and pushing, and readjusting. It has too in order for the blood to be pushed out to the tip of its wings, otherwise it’ll never be able to fly. If you or I step in because we feel sorry for the butterfly and try to make it easier for it, we take the risk of damaging their flying potential. They’ll be grounded for life.

So why am I giving you a science lesson today. Well, because somebody who’s reading this is having a hard time trying to understand why you’re going through what you’re going through. You’ve been on your hands and knees (maybe even literally), begging God to get you out of the mess you’re in, but He’s not doing it. You’ve tried your best to deal with it, live with it, cope with it, but you can’t make sense of it. You’ve stood in front of the mirror, in the shower, over the dishes and you still can’t wrap your head around it.

Now listen to me, you’re about to start flying, but know that without the struggle you’d never get off the ground. And if God, who loves you dearly were to bring you out too soon, you’d risk not reaching your full potential. Without the struggle you’d never be free.

I thought of that as I read of a woman named Rebekah, who was having twins and those two boys were “struggling” inside of her. (Genesis 25:22). It’s the only time I know of the word “struggle” is used in the Bible.

Here’s my word of encouragement for you today: You may be struggling now, but you have no idea what your struggle will birthe. All you have to do is be willing to fight through your struggle and not give up! Struggle is the strength you need to not only survive but thrive.

Father,
When I am struggling, remind me it’s for my good. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen