Paul writes in Philippians 1:21-22a “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me.”
What does living for Christ and fruitful labor look like for you?
In other words, what’s your purpose in life?
Please share in the Comments Section your thoughts.
“Oh that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my border, and that Your hand might be with me, and that You would keep me from harm that it may not pain me!” And God granted him what he requested. 1 Chronicles 4:10
I recently repotted my mint and basil. The herbs just weren’t looking right. The mint was tough and getting brown, and the basil wasn’t growing as rapidly as it usually does.
Tangled roots dug deep into the soil through the holes in the pot. I cut the roots at the bottom of the pot, so that I could pull the herbs from the pot. The roots encased the soil, keeping the shape of the pot when I pulled them out of the pot. I sliced the roots, poured new soil into the pot, placed the trimmed basil in the pot, watered it and trusted that it would thrive.
“We do not know one promise these men made, one pledge they gave, one word they spoke; but we do know they summed up and perfected, by one supreme act, the highest virtues of men and citizens. For love of country they accepted death, and thus resolved all doubts, and made immortal their patriotism and their virtue.”– James A. Garfield
May 30, 1868 Arlington National Cemetery
“Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind”; and it was so. God made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:24-25
I had the privilege of watching five caterpillars over three days. I spotted them eating my flowers. I have many flowers in my yard and take great pride in them. Yet, I was glad to share a few flowers with these beautiful creatures. In turn, they let me capture their amazing movements on camera. Every morning, I talked with them; I know, one-sided conversations can be perceived as silly. I enjoyed our early morning conversations, though. When I came home in the evening, they’d be fatter and longer, but oh, so graceful and beautiful.
This morning, one was still munching flowers, but a few hours later, he was not to be seen.
I looked deep in the bed of the plant to see if I could see cocoons, but I was unable to find them. I’m hoping that in a few weeks, I’ll see colorful butterflies flying around the flowers.
Four transformations in a butterfly’s life
Did you know that there were four transformations in the butterfly’s life?
- Egg. The butterfly lays tiny eggs on leaves.
- Caterpillar. The egg hatches, and the caterpillar eats the leaf. My caterpillars graduated to eating flowers.
- Chrysalis. The caterpillar spins a web-like chrysalis around its body and rests, as it transforms into a butterfly.
- Butterfly. Slowly, a butterfly emerges from the chrysalis. It rests for awhile, and then, it flies away.
Four transformations in a Christian’s walk
You might say that Christians have four transformations in their Christian walk.
- New creation. Once a person accepts Jesus as His Savior, he dies to himself and lives to Christ, Galatians 2:20. He becomes a new creation in Jesus, 1 Corinthians 5:17.
- Baby in Christ. As new Christians, we long for the milk of the pure Word of God, 1 Peter 2:2.
- Mature in Christ. As we feed on the Word of God and trust in the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we practice what we learn, and we are able to discern good and evil. Hebrews 5:14
- Like God. One day, we shall see God as He is, and we will be like Him, in all His beauty, holiness, and glory, 1 John 3:2.
I’m looking forward to spending eternity exploring the tiny marvels and great works of art that God has created. He is such an artist!
In the meantime, I’ll watch for the butterflies, hummingbirds, occasional eagle, and doves.
Father, Your creation delights me. Thank You, for the beautiful creatures, fragrant flowers, and varieties of landscapes, waters, and heavens. There is beauty all around me just waiting to be discovered. Help me to see Your world through Your eyes. Help me to listen to Your world through Your ears. Help me to understand and share Your world with others. I praise You and delight in You. Amen.
Please share in the comments section the small and great wonders you are delighting in.
O LORD, you have searched me and known me! Psalm 139:1
O LORD, you have examined me and understand me deeply.
You know my highs and my lows.
You see my rest and my works.
My rest is in You.
My works are Your works, prepared from before the foundations of the world.
You knew that You would empower me to climb the Great Wall six months after You healed me.
You know my thoughts and my words before I know them.
The Holy Spirit prays for me when words escape me.
You protect me and lead me.
You protected my body in the car crash.
I don’t know myself, but You know me. My thoughts are not Your thoughts.
I don’t understand why I do what I don’t want to do, but You know.
You are with me in my failure and in my success; in my despair and in my joy.
When I get my eyes off You, You lead me back to Your joy.
You wrapped me in eternity.
Before I was born, You formed the works that You equipped me to accomplish.
For You created me and declared Your creation very good.
Before the foundation of the world, You formed experiences to shape me into the woman You prepared me to be.
Before the foundation of the world, You knew me and gave Your own dear Son as my Redeemer.
Lord, the earth is in birth pangs, but You are in control.
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23-24
As I pray the Scriptures, I learn about God, and I learn about myself. God is the Lord and is on His throne. As the world swirls around us, please take time to think about how God has worked in your life and acknowledge that before Him.
Father, You are our Creator, our Guide, our Protector, our King. Examine us and teach what we need to know and lead us in Your way. We love You, Lord and praise You for knowing us so intimately and still loving us. Like David, such knowledge and love is too high for us. We praise You! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.