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Beautiful Struggles

Rose-colored glasses- do you own a pair?

They aren’t just a unisex fashion accessory; no, sometimes they are a necessity. A tool to help you change your vision.

You see- it’s all about perspective.

Especially when facing hardships.

Having the “right” perspective and viewing circumstances through a different lens can mean the difference between a life well-lived and a life of bitterness and defeat.

If your knee-jerk reaction to struggles and hardships is negative- get ready to don some rose-tinted lenses.

Here’s why…. hardships, struggles, and trials are all beneficial instruments of change. They shape us, make us stronger, provide new insights, and (for those willing) they bring us closer to God.

Yet, we naturally gravitate to the easy, we pursue the pleasure and dream of the cushy-life. We want to be showered with riches, health, sunny weather, and clear sailings and to get that trophy with no effort exerted.

I must admit, it sounds dreamy but, life has so much more to offer if we are willing to embrace the process. No pain. No gain.

The story of The Man and the Butterfly Cocoon is a wonderful illustration of this point:

A man found a tiny butterfly cocoon and noticed a small opening appeared. He watched in fascination as the creature painstakingly struggled to squeeze its body through the tiny crack. After several hours, the insect just stopped moving, seemingly exhausted. 

The man decided it would be best to help, so, he grabbed a pair of scissors and delicately snipped away the cocoon. Enough to allow the butterfly to emerge revealing an oversized body with shriveled little wings. 

The man continued to watch in hopeful anticipation that the wings would expand and gloriously carry the butterfly away. Instead, he watched in horror as the poor incapacitated creature was swiftly eaten by a passing bird. 

What the man didn't appreciate is that the butterfly needed a prolonged struggle. The tedious process of squeezing the oversized body through the minuscule cocoon opening is what forces fluid from the body into the wings- the strenuous activity provides the necessary elements for the development of balance and strength. Without the struggle, the butterfly was left disproportionate, damaged, and weak. A pitiful creature left unable to fulfill its destiny and potential. 

Just like the butterfly, if we have no obstacles, no struggles, or challenges we can't develop our wings and we miss valuable opportunities!

Indeed, our struggles are God-ordained opportunities that draw us closer to Jesus. They can be used to do the hard work necessary to shape and strengthen us; to ultimately reveal the beautiful creature that God intended- one filled with destiny and purpose.

The next time you find yourself facing a setback, hardship, obstacle, or challenge, remember the beautiful struggle of the butterfly. Choose to view your circumstances through your rose-colored glasses and embrace the difficulties because they are necessary for our good, they transform us and bring us closer to God's greatness.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. ~Matthew 5:3-6

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