A devotional by Mirachelle Canada
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” –John 3:16 (ESV)
It’s Holy week! The week between Palm Sunday, the observance of when Jesus Christ entered Jerusalem on a donkey to the cheering crowds shouting, “Hosanna! Hosanna!” to Easter Sunday, the day of celebration and rejoicing that “Jesus is risen! He’s alive!”
During this week, Christians around the world take the opportunity to reflect on the events that led to the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Among these events are the last supper, Jesus’s arrest, trial, and the crucifixion (Matthew 21-28; Mark 11-16; Luke 19-24; John 12-21). It is a week great in contrast: from public celebration to accusation, confusion, and ending with death.
As I personally reflect on these events and the life of Jesus, it reminds me of the life cycle of a butterfly. The day it is born, a very tiny caterpillar hatches from an egg. It is small and vulnerable as Jesus was – a baby born in a stable. As the caterpillar takes in nutrients, it grows its body mass thousands of times. Jesus grew up in wisdom and stature because he was about his Heavenly Father’s business, even teaching in the temple at age 11! As caterpillar grows, it changes in appearance. For thirty years, Jesus prepared and waited for the right time to be revealed as the son of God.
A caterpillar knows its purpose – to live, grow, effect life, and sacrifice its life to become something beautiful. Jesus also knew His purpose – to live, grow, point people to a life with God, and ultimately sacrifice himself for the remission of sins to show us the way to become something beautiful too.
On Good Friday, Jesus was crucified on the cross and buried in a tomb. All hope seemed lost. His disciples were hiding, and the enemy believed he had won. When a caterpillar becomes a chrysalis, it appears dead, wrapped in a cocoon. At this stage in its life cycle is the most dangerous because of weather, disease, and predators. By all accounts it appears dead, but the truth is that a transformation is occurring. So too did a transformation occur in the kingdom of Heaven as Jesus entered hell and took back the keys to death, hell, and the grave.
When a butterfly emerges from its cocoon, its wings are crumpled. It must hang its wings down and begin pumping them so they will fill with fluid and straighten out. It must wait until its wings are ready to fly. So too did Jesus, even after he had resurrected from the tomb, take time to prepare before revealing himself in all his glory. When Mary saw him at the tomb, he told her not to touch him because his time was not yet ready, but he sent her ahead to tell the others the good news (John 20:17).
So why is the life cycle of a butterfly important to the life and death of Jesus? To the world, butterflies are indicators of a healthy environment. They also show us the beauty and fragility of life. For the world, Jesus came to show us the unhealthy life of our souls without him. He showed the way to a better life here on earth and to one that would be eternal. He died so that we might live abundantly (John 10:10)!
So, as we reflect on this Holy Week, let us pay reverence to our risen Savior, His sacrifice, and rejoice in His victory, but also consider the beauty of His creation all around us that reflects His glory too. It’s purposeful, motivated, willing to sacrifice even unto death, but it’s also destined to become something more wonderful and beautiful than anyone can imagine.
Praise the Lord! He is Risen!
*Note from Alexis: Mirachelle’s devotional reminds me of the song “Hosanna” by Hillsong Worship. You can listen to it here.
Let’s Pray: Dear Lord, we thank you and honor you for your sacrifice on the cross. We rejoice in your resurrection power. We ask that you give us eyes to see, ears to hear, and a heart to receive the message of your glory reflected in all creation so that it may also be reflected in us. In Jesus’s Name I pray. Amen.
Mirachelle Canada is a writer, playwright, screenwriter, and theatre director/producer from Northern Virginia, where she teaches television production at her high school alma mater.
She earned her Master of Fine Arts in Script & Screenwriting from Regent University and is an alumnus of Act One: Hollywood Film & Television Writing Program.
Mirachelle is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, American Fiction Writers Virginia Chapter, The Jerry Jenkins Writers Guild, and Your Novel Blueprint.
She is currently working on her first historical fiction novel set during WWII.
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