Nature has taught me…Part 2
When we were still living in Berrien Springs, Michigan I would take Zoi, our little puppy, outside to use the potty.
I especially loved taking Zoi to use the restroom out in the snow, to see her childlikeness in playing with the snow and eating it and running around. It was the simple things of life that were little gems of innocence in our present day.
In our many escapades to the outdoors I was introduced to the cicada. On the trees that governed our backyard were the remains of the Cicada hanging on to the tree but empty inside. Seeing this every day, grossed me out at first but then my curiosity led me to google what I was seeing.
It turns out that the cicada emerges from the soil at night, climbs the nearest vertical surface (many times a tree), splits their exoskeleton and escapes under the cover of darkness.
So essentially what I saw on the tree was the cicada skin or exoskeleton that had been left behind after it had grown from the nymph stage to an adult. Dragonflies, damselflies, stoneflies, and mayflies also leave behind these tangible shadows of their former selves.
This immediately took my mind to the biblical image and metaphor of what happens when we meet/encounter Christ and when we choose to live for and follow Him.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
We leave our exoskeleton behind and become a new creature. Just like a butterfly leaving its cocoon.
When we come face to face with Jesus, we are left with a decision, to follow or not. If we decide to follow God, we give Him our lives and He gives us His. Or in religious talk, we die to our old selves and live a new life in Christ.
Colossians 3:3-5 adds, “For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.”
Continuing, Galatians 2:20 teaches that, “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live I live by believing in God’s Son, who loved me and took the punishment for my sins.”
What that means is that we need to leave our old habits, speech and conduct, behind and live our new life under the influence of the Holy Spirit and the example of Jesus. We now live a whole different life, patterned after Jesus.
The reality is that there are many of us with our skeletons in the closet or our exoskeletons still on our backs. Rather than leaving it at the tree - or the cross ;) - we take it with us and we do not truly live a life like Christ because we are still tied to our old lives.
We cannot carry our dead carcass with us. If we carry it with us we will stink and be unfruitful. We will also leave an opportunity to return to that which Christ has already freed us from (Heb 11:15).
So leave the old behind. Put to rest that which is dead and enjoy the new life that God offers!
Sebastian Lopez has been involved with Enspire Productions since 2010. He is pastoring in Palm Coast, Florida.