This is an old post I made on a long-lost forum a few years ago. I edited some of the time references so as not to be too confusing. 🙂
We had a visiting speaker a while ago…uncle Arthur Burt, who is around 96 years old now! He has been a preacher for 78+ years!
We always love it when he comes…he has such a way with words. Sometimes he gathers the children together at the front and tells them a story first before they go out to their sunday school classes. His stories are riveting and has the kids hanging at his very word.
I could never tell this as well as he did, but he shared an analogy with us that I thought I’d share with you.
This guy was piddling about (I just had to use this word in the American sense…in South Africa it means something altogether different…although you can piddle in a garden and many young boys do it at least once in their lifetime!) his garden in late winter when he noticed a cocoon attached to a plant. He decided to bring it inside, to his warm and comfy home, to see it develop into a butterfly. For weeks and weeks he watched the coccoon. He knew the time was getting near. Finally one day he saw the cocoon move. He watched, fascinated, as the butterfly’s head popped through a tiny hole in the coccoon. At this point the butterfly seemed to really struggle to get any further. His head was out, but no matter how much he struggled there seemed to be no progress. Fearing that the dry air inside his home could have affected the butterfly’s ability to emerge form the cocoon, the man got a pair of tiny scissors and carefully snipped the hole around the butterfly’s head to make it larger. The butterfly plopped out of the coccoon and dragged itself pitifully across the table, leaving a pool of water in its wake. It died shortly afterward.
So the man thought he should ask an expert what had gone wrong. The expert was aghast when he heard that the man had snipped the hole in the cocoon bigger. “Don’t you know,” he asked “that the very struggle to get out of that coccoon is what forces the water into the butterfly’s wings to pump it up so that it can fly?”
How many times do we seek an easy way out, when it is the hard times that equip us for flight? And how many times do we release others (I’m thinking of my kiddos here) from their struggles in life and in doing so we rob them of the opportunity to “find their wings?”
Uncle Arthur put it like this: “Have you ever been kinder than God?”