The weather has been so extremely hot this summer that the butterfly traffic in my backyard has been quite slow. I had begun to see tiger swallowtail butterflies in the area, but none had visited my house until, of course, I was gone. My husband, Eddy, informed me upon my return home of the beauty I had missed. For the next four days in a row I watched with camera ready.
Now, God says to pray about all things, so I did. I asked him to bring another one of those butterflies back so that I could capture a picture of it. It was on day four that my prayer was answered. I was off work that day, keeping a continual glance in the direction of the butterfly bush. Midday, movement caught my eye through the window and there it was! I grabbed my camera and snapped as many shots as I could before it flew away. Answered prayer…God wink all in one!
However, when photographing the object of my obsession I noticed that one of its long tails was missing. I wondered why the one that appeared in my yard had to be somewhat broken, affecting my perfect photo shoot. I was quickly reminded of my own brokeness because of this butterfly and remembered that it was cause for praise. God uses our brokeness to draw us closer to Him. Life’s challenges are gifts that develop beauty in God’s eyes.
“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.” (James 1:2-4)
Thankful for my answered pray, I took joy in viewing the beauty of this creature in the pictures I had taken. Quite honestly, though, I must admit that as a photographer I wondered why the perfect specimen did not come to feast on the flowers.
A visit from this kind of butterfly is seldom and fleeting. Though this same butterfly appeared the very next day, I was not anticipating a passing through of any more. Well, wouldn’t you know the very next week another arrived. I knew it was not the same one because this one was perfect, no broken parts and the most vivid colors…another God wink despite my feelings about the last butterfly. And can I just say that this one appeared on a day that I especially needed to feel the presence of God. That I did as I praised Him and took this picture. (However, this one is missing the beautiful blue colors sported by the first butterfly!)
You know, we in these earthly bodies are all broken and battered from this life. How wonderful will be the transformation to perfection we will experience upon entering Heaven. How blessed I was to see this example, this answered prayer unfold before my eyes in my own backyard. May God reveal Himself to you in very real ways to you this week. He is there…always! Be looking for Him! To God Be the Glory!