There’s an old story about a man (some versions call him a hunter) who found a cocoon of an emperor moth. He noticed a tiny opening in the top of the cocoon where the large moth was trying to squeeze its way out. The man watched and watched as it tried to push its large body through the tiny hole. It was struggling, suffering, and the man just couldn’t take it anymore.
In his compassion, he took a pair of scissors and clipped the hole, making it larger, so the moth could get out easier. When it came out, the man excitedly watched and waited for it to fly away in victory. But it didn’t. It limped around weakly and never spread its wings.
The man didn’t understand that, as the moth tried to get through the tiny opening, its struggle was forcing fluid from its body into its wings, so they could eventually spread out and take flight. By cutting the hole, the man cut short the moth’s necessary preparation period. So it never reached its full potential or found real freedom from pain. In fact, it prolonged it.
I came across this story this morning, which is ironic because I had literally just prayed for a quick end to a few current struggles. I guess I was kind of complaining about how lengthy they’ve been, and I was asking God, in His mercy, to “set us free.” But perhaps it is His very mercy that is allowing it to continue.
Perhaps our struggles are a part of God’s plan for us. Perhaps as we push through, day in and day out, we are being molded and shaped for a greater “flight” and a greater “freedom” than we can imagine now. Perhaps during these times, the Living Water of God is moving within us and preparing the wings of our souls with patience, surrender, faith, trust, perseverance, and humility. Perhaps this is what we REALLY need in life.
So I’m thinking I should change my prayer. Instead of asking Him to get me out of this, maybe I should ask Him to just give me strength. Because it’s going to pass eventually. The question is, will I have grown or learned anything from the trial when it does? Will my “wings” (my spirit) be any stronger when I’m released than when I was cocooned up in suffering? I sure hope so. Otherwise, I guess it’s all in vain.
The problem is I’m not real good at this long-suffering thing. I’m kind of impatient. Maybe it’s just my personality, or that I’m not spiritually “mature” enough... or heck, maybe it’s just my ADHD 😉 LOL (or all of the above). But “waiting” isn’t my favorite.
Maybe that’s just it, though... maybe I shouldn’t be waiting, but working. Working on patience and surrender and trust. Maybe my prayer should simply be:
“Lord, color my wings with virtue; fill them with the strength of Your Spirit. Give me the grace I need to fulfill your plan, find true freedom, and reach the heights of Heaven.”
Not gonna lie, I’m still hoping for a speedy resolve. 🤦🏻♀️ But I’m trying... one day at a time.
Praying all of you guys find peace in your struggles too. We are all in this together. ❤️