Worm vs. Butterfly

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

(Romans 12:2, NIV)

The word “transform” being “metamorphosis  when a caterpillar changes from a lowly worm into a flying butterfly, it is called a metamorphosis. If we use this illustration with our scripture from Romans can we identify ourselves? Tell your story!

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37 thoughts on “Worm vs. Butterfly

  1. ” worm – 2) informal a weak or despicable person (used as a general term of contempt).”

    “despicable |diˈspikəbəl|
    adjective
    deserving hatred and contempt”

    Woe, does this particular definition of worm seem to be speaking something?

    “If we use this illustration with our scripture from Romans can we identify ourselves? Tell your story!”

    Without the direction of the Holy Spirit, the application of God’ s Word,….I’m just a worm, who has no idea of God’s perfect will in my life. (Is this right? Am I understanding any of Romans 12: 2?) Sure hope the teacher isn’t taking grades today! 🙂

    1. Tammy, your answer with worm definition got me all nervous! I had two long talks with my husband on this. I do not want to be a worm but all to often I have been and I am.
      When we continued on with the readings in Romans 12 I began to understand a bit just what it takes to transform. Now my question to you; is this a daily decision by decision until we see The Lord! Just a few things I need to do from Romans 12, hate evil which means don’t participate in it. Don’t exchange evil for evil, etc etc. Now my story, I make good decisions part of the time but sometimes forget to search the word for the right decisions or take Godly action and not the worlds way. The bottom line to me is If I do 2 things godly and one thing worldly I’m sure not a flying colorful butterfly. So that leaves me a squirming worm trying to morph!

      Hey Tammy help…a lot in this and why did you make it so hard with your water reflection? ie my reflection!

      1. “Now my question to you; is this a daily decision by decision until we see The Lord!”

        Sara, my first thought would be, “yes”…… As I thought on it though, I began to think of Peter. Correct me if I’m wrong, but when Peter told Jesus that he would never deny Him, do you think he meant it? Do you think he made the “decision” to lie to Jesus? If so, did he make the “decision” to be worldly then? Or did he “decide” to be worldly, when he denied Him three times? Maybe, I better go search this encounter in the Bible? Maybe this has nothing to do with the point here? I don’t know if I’m helping or making this “Worm Vs Butterfly” blog worse?

        I think I like your comment above: “So that leaves me a squirming worm trying to morph!”
        Hay, I looked up the stages of metamorphosis, and the cocoon stage can be lengthy sometimes….if I understand it correctly? There are some drastic changes taking place then.
        All this makes me think of the song I learned as a child……..”He’s still working on me, to make me what I ought to be. It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars, the sun, and the earth, and Jupiter, and Mars. How loving and patient He must be, He’s still working on me.” Thank God He is still working on me!

      2. Renew my my mind-working on me-magnolia tree-I want to be. Stately, shiny waxy leaves green as can be-always beautiful fully clothed-fist sized buds sees the sun and pop like the stars of the night. Every so often a leaf browns and beautifies the ground-but without a doubt more often than not she not only shows her flashy flora but she is known by friend and stranger alike her sweet fragrance is her most notably gift. Watch her as she renews day after day year after year-she ages better than wine-she is more beautiful with time than when she first begun.

        Yes, God has left us landscape beauty to show us how to be transformed by renewing the mind like Magnolias on a long winding pathway that leads to an old ancient estate just waiting to be occupied!

        P.S. have you noticed how Magnolia’s green leaves sparkle after a fresh rain and the eyes may just tear when the Red Robin visits the cool of her branches and shade of ‘brella for a little R&R!

  2. The scripture and illustration seem to say to me that renewing the mind is the key to change and if I am not seeing an ongoing, developing change, then my mind is not being renewed and I am stuck in old patterns that will never evolve into a free flying butterfly that does its work in God’s creation by helping to pollinate flowers that will bring forth fruit and seeds. “…can we identify ourselves?” It is looking like I am still somewhere in the worm stage.

    1. As I thought on your magnolia illustration on renewal, I also reread from one of your retreat workbooks, ‘Designs of Ones’ Heart’. In the ‘Winter Tells Us’ chapter you instruct us to renew ourselves everyday forever. Your magnolia is as green in winter as any other season.Heart and mind must go hand in hand in this process.

    2. In light of Debi’s heart and mind and winter green Magnolia tree; I am reminded of the words of the Psalmist (52:8); “I’m like a green Olive Tree in the house of The Lord.” And, Psalm 1 as writer contrast two ways of life. One, being a healthy tree, in my analogy a Magnolia tree, always in beauty and fragrance flourishing on a rich estate’s path rather than a unhealthy tree standing on unstately land and shows no shame or repentance of living an ungodly life as it is planted on the path of sinners and loving it.

      If I’m not being clear in my wording after the study of Psalm 1 and the reading of Psalm 52:8, let me hear your differences. I, like Tammy, seem to be in a study learning mode.

      1. Your wording seems clear to me, Sara, after reading Psalm 1 and 52. It explains your analogy of the Magnolia. It seems black or white; we are either a magnolia or an unhealthy tree.

  3. I guess you might say that when a ‘worm’ morphs into a butterfly it experiences a paradigm shift. It is like leaving an old state of worm-ness and transitioning to gloryous-ness.’ I, as one of the ones that Paul is exhorting in this Scripture, am being encouraged to render old ways of thinking which keep me imprisoned in the cocoon of old religious ways of looking at my way of life, mindsets and breaking through those walls of bondage to see and hear what the Word of the Lord is really saying. To renew my mind, daily.
    Sometimes I have a hard time with that….well…often. When new light is shed on the way I have viewed something, even in the Word, then I tend to dig in with explanations and excuses for my way of thinking or the way I have learned something in the past. Or I mimic the world’s view on different issues This keeps me from the next step to glory…from glory to glory. I must be joining Debi in our worm-ness. Why would I insist upon staying in that old gray tomb of a cocoon when a break through in that wall brings me into a new glory?

  4. This reminds me of a story Jesus gave me to write called “The Wishful Butterfly”. You can read it if you type the title in on Search above.

  5. Perhaps that is what is wrong with my story and what is wrong with people. We think once we have accepted the Lord as Savior that is it. We can go on as with life without investing ourselves and time getting to know the one who died for us. It is a lot more work and leads to a lot more joy in the spirit and a close personal relationship. Perhaps I should change the story and have the butterfly become more and more colorful as he/she evolves from glory to glory.

  6. I believe you are right. Perhaps that is where my story is wrong. A lot of people think that once they are saved that is it They fell to work on a personal relationship with the Lord and drawing nearer and nearer to HIM, counting on Him in each moment of their day. They don’t think they need to work on getting to know him through the scriptures and daily study or praying so He can answer and also change your mind as you do pray.
    Once we’ve made the change we keep on working to evolve from glory to glory – glorying in the one who paid it all for us. Yes need to change the story to have the butterfly change from colorful to gloriously colorful over time.

    1. Rena, I really like your above thoughts! Gives a lot to ponder. Makes your story have part 2. And, shows what it’s like to grow whether child, spiritual or non spiritual adult or tree.

      I see where Tammy went on study of the process of worm to butterfly and found not a flip of the switch.

  7. Reading Tammy’s comment above about being long in the cocoon stage…going from worm to cocoon to butterfly…do you all think this is reflective of GOD’S 1. Good Will = worm; (I mean, you’ve got to have the worm first) 2. Pleasing Will =cocoon. (that’s the middle part of this transition) and finally 3. Perfect Will…..the beautiful butterfly. Just wondering….

    1. Back to Tammy’s comment with definition and Holy Spirit…and MG’s thoughts…maybe we have the transforming connector as the mind is put to a test by renewing while reviewing the truth that sets us free.

      1. Sara, if I am understanding what you are saying here, your ‘transforming connector’ is what is physically needed in order for our minds to be transformed and that it can only come about by a mind test which will involve a review of truth?
        I see in Jeremiah 11:20 that God does test the mind as well as the heart. “But, O Lord of hosts,You who judge righteously, testing the mind and the heart…” and in Jeremiah 17: 11 “I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind.” Also in Psalm 26: 2 the Psalmist asks: “test my heart and my mind”.
        So it seems that the blog scripture from Romans says we will be doing some testing, but won’t be able to do it until God does some testing on us.

  8. Oh how I wonder about the worm
    Who crawls about the earth thinking all is good with it.
    Until the heel of the enemy chooses to squish it and torture it
    Make fun of its wormness
    And make it seem worthless
    Needful of death
    Or convince it that mirroring him is the way to go
    Paths of destruction
    Enticing but leading to a torturous death of the soul
    Rendering the worm strengthless in relying totally on self
    Which the enemy stands and directs each person every day in their mind.
    At last the enemy chortles – I had them do it
    Self distruction
    Oh how I lie and the worm believes me
    He laughs but the soul weeps eventually and forever more.

    No wonder God placed the beautiful butterfly within a cocoon to
    Protect and let it feast off the sweetness of His Word as He holds and nurtures it in His hand.
    Growing and growing until at last it is time to be birthed into the
    Spiritual realm flying free where God would have it go
    Needful everyday to put on the presence of the Lord Jesus
    To escape the drawing of the earth. Glorifying God with each flap of his wings.
    The earth self fires draw the butterflies wherever they go day and night.
    Fly into the arms of the Lord and seek his presence and
    He will show you through HIS words how to escape the draw of
    the enemy’s fire.
    Live strong in peacefulness, joy, being in his presence.
    Time in God’s presence brings strength to the soul
    Giving the soul into God’s hands the butterfly obtains wings of strength
    As trust in the Lord grows stronger and stronger .
    Fly strong lean, lean on the Lord.

    Don’t skip the infilling of HIS Words daily as you fly about
    In a home that is not yours, but a temporary place that draws you into
    His arms forever if you choose.
    A place where character is built by God or you get stuck in self life.
    Oh to fly into the arms of Jesus
    And fill His presence like a cocoon all about daily.
    Put on your wings daily as the wind of the Holy Spirit
    Helps you on God’s flight plan for your life.
    Being changed from glory to glory, clothed in His strength.
    Wings strong enough to carry you home.

    1. While reading Rena’s thoughts on the mind life of a worm I was reminded of the writings from Psalm 22 where it seems that Jesus thought of himself as a worm. This also caused my mind to travel back to first comment of Tammy’s giving us the definition of worm. And, her thoughts on why she might be a worm!

      Why did Jesus call Himself a worm?

      Psalm 22, Verse 6 “But I am a worm and no man; a reproach of men, and despised by the people.”

      1. Hay, look at the footnotes for the scripture Sara has put here. (Psalm 22: 6) “When others despise us and heap scorn upon us, they treat us as less than human. After much degradation, we, like David, may begin to feel like worms. When we feel the sting of rejection, we must keep in mind the hope and victory that God promises us.”

      2. July 13, 2013 at 7:37 AM Sara says:
        While reading Rena’s thoughts on the mind life of a worm I was reminded of the writings from Psalm 22 where it seems that Jesus thought of himself as a worm. This also caused my mind to travel back to first comment of Tammy’s giving us the definition of worm. And, her thoughts on why she might be a worm!

        Why did Jesus call Himself a worm?

        Psalm 22, Verse 6 “But I am a worm and no man; a reproach of men, and despised by the people.”

        (Footnotes for Psalm 22:6 says: “When others despise us and heap scorn upon us, they treat us as less than human. After much degradation, we, like David, may begin to feel like worms. When we feel the sting of rejection we must keep in mind the hope and victory that God promises us.”

  9. I find the blogs/comments on The Daily Lily challenging since the essence of our study comes from different views and so many little needle threads to weave in the form before it gives its beauty! Weave on lilies. Matthew 6:28 encourages us, “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin.”

    Meditate on the Lily neither having to toil or spin to show beauty. Psalm 22 locked in the belly of the soul bursting forth with truth as we live and tell the story from generation to generation.

    1. “Meditate on the Lily neither having to toil or spin to show beauty.”
      They just show the essence of what God grows them to be. They don’t worry or get concerned with what they can put on. They live what they are and what God made them to be.

      1. Sara you said below “Lilies don’t show very often! Wonder where they go?”
        That is an interesting observation and question to consider. I would say they quietly and unobtrusively go to work for the rest of the year except for the dead of winter when they hide for protection underground. For the daylilies who only show their bloom for 12-16 hours, some in the day and some at night, their work means producing seed after the bloom falls as well as multiplying themselves…spreading so that they can show more next year.
        The bulb lilies, like the Easter lily, want someone to pick their faded blooms off so they don’t produce seed and will continue to make blooms. But don’t cut their yellowing foliage off too soon! They want to drain every drop of nutrition before making an exit. They would rather expend their energy strengthening their bulb and making little bulblets and roots underground so their show is muultiplied next season.

  10. There is a scripture music chorus that comes to my remembrance that seems appropriate to go with transformation. It is from Ephesians 4:23 KJ “Be renewed in the spirit of your mind.”

  11. I suppose Christ called Himself a worm because He was despised and rejected by other men. They regarded Him as such and treated Him as a lowly, despicable and unappealing, especially as He was being hanged on the Cross. Men’s hatred of the Christ and His teachings and their love of sin {mine, too] put Him on the cross.

  12. Today in Sunday School class, the teacher said the Pharisees focused on the outside while Jesus’s teachings focused on the heart and the inward man. We focused on Matthew 5: 17-20 and Matthew 5: 13-48 Result of disobedience. Proverbs 6: 16-20. In the sermon the concentration was on James 4. The congregation at that time had only focused on the outward with laws and legalism so Jesus’s view was new – a change. Many had trouble with change.

    1. Interesting study and summation. Rena says, “Many have trouble with change.” I would add change happens while we’re asleep at the wheel all to often. I would like to ask a question about saling. If I have a big sailboat, sails up, gliding along, taking a long nap, and the winds shift and I sleep on would I likey be docked at my intended location when I awake?

      1. “If I have a big sailboat, sails up, gliding along, taking a long nap, and the winds shift and I sleep on would I likey be docked at my intended location when I awake? ” If I may answer……….that would be a BIG “no”.

      2. Tammy says, No! Based on this I too often sleep thru transformation, renewal, and revival only to awaken clueless. So, I go on as a worm rather than walking with the cross as my butterfly wings.

  13. From a morning FB postingI found this: “No problem can be solved by the same consciousness that caused the problem in the first place. ~Albert Einstein~
    “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, ~The Apostle Paul~ Romans 12:2
    Two great men mention that there must first be a transformation of thinking and consciousness before we can truly find change of behavior.”

  14. These quotes, along w/ the worm/butterfly contrast make me think a worm’s mind must be changed somehow in the cocoon. If he emerged with wings and a new body but thought he still had to crawl on a branch to find a leaf of a tree to eat, he wouldn’t get very far or live very long. Even his eating habits change when he develops into a butterfly. Now its nectar and pollen…no more eating leaves.
    I need to learn a lot from the worm.

  15. We all understand that the renewing of our minds brings forth a transformation, a metamorphosis, so to speak….like a butterfly coming out of the cocoon. But what if one comes forth as a MOTH instead of a butterfly? David says in Psalm 17:14 O Lord, from men of this world [these poor moths of the night] whose portion in life is idle and vain. Their bellies are filled with Your hidden treasure [what You have stored up for themselves]; their children are satiated, and they leave the rest [of their] wealth to their babes.”

  16. In reading today Sarah Young’s #60 devotional from ‘Jesus Today’ she refers to Romans 12:2. She says “Make Me your default focus…” Further on she says, “I want you to train your mind to turn toward Me more and more. Think about who I am – Creator, Savior, King of kings. Ponder also my amazing, unending Love for you.” She goes on to tell of the additional need to spend time in quietness and says “Also, it is vital to saturate your mind with Scripture, which is all about Me. As you practice these disciplines, you will gradually be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

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