Saturday, January 30, 2010

Bugs and Living Daily for Christ

"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. Day unto day utters speech,and night unto night reveals knowledge. There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard. Their line has gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world." (Psalm 19:1-4/NKJV)

"For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,..." (Romans 1: 20/NKJV)

My youngest son (2nd grade) loves bugs. He goes to the public library and checks out books on bugs. He goes to the school library and checks out books on bugs. He was ecstatic when he found out that his school was going to have "The Bug Lady" come into school and show her bug collection (this included live bugs). He draws pictures of bugs. He has written and illustrated his own little book about bugs. My youngest son loves bugs.

He also loves God and things related to God. He wants to please God in thought, word and action. He loves reading the Bible. He wants to read it to us. He wants us to read it to him. He wants to understand it. He wants to take notes on it. He informed me and my wife that he would be telling others about Jesus at school (we told him that was fine, just be polite when doing so). He also loves God and things related to God.

Now I have often heard of how the chrysalis is used as a symbol of Christianity and the new life (remember Bullfrogs and Butterflies?) , but my son told me something in the van the other morning that caused me to pause and think anew of how everything in nature reflects God's glory. The story goes something like this;

Whenever possible I attempt to pray and read the Bible with my children before taking them to school in the morning . The morning my son choose to share the wisdom God had shown him we had briefly read and discussed Romans 6:5-7. The discussion had been a very good one and the topics had gone from Romans 6:5-7, to the ark of the covenant, to how God now views us through Christ's righteousness and perfection, to how we must grow and change everyday and become more like what God wants us to be. The discussion continued as we loaded into the van and we were off to school.

All of my children have a habit of internalizing everything (are all children like that?) and my youngest son will often quietly think on things and slowly take them apart in his heart and mind. So my youngest son sat in the back quietly, listening and thinking. When we were almost to school he finally spoke up and said something like this,

" Dad, our daily walk with Jesus is like bugs when they shed their skin."

Please allow me to explain my son's reasoning-because bugs have an exoskeleton they go through a process called ecdysis, i.e. they shed their skin periodically. This process is needed because their exoskeleton is not like our skin but is hard and does not grow as our skin does, consequently as a bug grows and matures it needs more room. Underneath is a new skin (or covering) which is quite vulnerable at first, but as time goes on (1-2 hours) the new exoskeleton hardens (a process called tanning) and the bug is able to go about it's daily life. It is during this time that the bug actually grows, it is also at this time that the bug is extremely vulnerable. My son (being the bug fiend that he is) had drawn an analogy between that of an insect going through the growth process of ecdysis and that of a Christian "putting off the old man" and "walking in newness of life".

"...that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness."
(Ephesians 4:22-24/NKJV)

"Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light...put on the Lord Jesus Christ,..."
(Romans: 13:12b, 14a/NKJV)

I was excited that God would give him such a revelation and reaffirmed what he said by telling him and my other sons that Paul spoke of how nature showed the glory of God (Romans 1:19-20a/NKJV).

Thank God for His Spirit and for the hope that He gives us parents as we endeavor to teach our children about Him. He has provided so many ways in nature alone to show Himself to us. I wonder if my son realizes the depth of his analogy...perhaps a little more research on ecdysis is required on my part. :)

"Simul iustus et peccator"*
*Martin Luther

praying mantis image source;