The Christian Butterfly


I saw the first lepidoptera of the year today

I could have said "I saw the first butterfly of the year", but that doesn't sound as scientific.

I could have said "The butterfly is a symbol of the soul", but I like to think my soul is more than just a bug with wings. (Perhaps it's less than.)

All things bright and beautiful

Like a dragon fly skimming a pool, butterflies can be mesmerizing. Diverse patterns formed by their brightly coloured wings and their erratic yet graceful flight.

Even more amazing is the concept of the 'butterfly effect', in which it is surmised that small actions can have enormous consequences; the flutter of a butterfly's wing on a Brazilian forest hillside can spawn a devastating hurricane in Texas. (But don't blame the butterfly; he is blissfully unaware.) Look for proof of this, and you can easily dismiss it as codswallop. But as we go through life, we witness many examples of tiny forces that can ultimately bring down governments or generate some other world changing creativity.

Through studying the light reflected by tiny scales of the swallowtail butterfly, scientists developed more efficient light-emitting diodes. And this new technology was applied to fibre-optic cable, a medium for telecommunication, without which the current economically developed world would be unable to function.

And the butterfly remains blissfully unaware.

As Christians, we are in a rather better position than the butterfly on the Brazilian hillside. We are right there, close to the world that can benefit from our actions. That little extra smile, the warm handshake, the "God bless you" to people we meet, if emitted from the heart, can be the catalyst to changing somebody's mood and from there, changing the path of somebody's life. And their life can, and will, affect the lives of an unknown number of other people. What an awesome privilege to have the opportunity to flutter those wings.

A butterfly is a reborn worm. And as we read in John 3:3, Christians are also reborn. We also read in Matt. 5:16 our commitment to let our light shine. So whenever you meet people, and let's face it; sometimes we're a bit shy to say "God bless you" to a stranger and we get 'butterflies in the stomach', remember this is your chance to be that light-emitting diode for Jesus.

We all know and remember a smiley person – someone whose heart seems to radiate through their teeth. And when they do, notice how it's almost impossible not to smile back...unless you are feeling very, very grumpy! So if you don't feel a smile coming on – why not do it anyway. Not only does it transform your inner chemical production and create 'happy hormones', but when people are on the end of your smile, they smile back (well most do).

And if you really don't genuinely feel like smiling at life, the universe and everybody – fake it until you make it!


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