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Outward appearances are deceiving, so don't be too quick to judge.

Take caterpillars, for instance.  Some caterpillars are a thing of beauty, but most of them aren't much to look at.  They crawl around like colored worms, they eat leaves for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and they have the personality of a sea slug.  How many people have invited you over to look at their caterpillar collection?  Few to none, I'll bet.  When God passed out good looks, he apparently skipped the caterpillars.

After caterpillars mature, they spin a silken chrysalis around their plump body, and they go into what seems like hibernation.  In the chrysalis stage, they're not much to look at either.   A chrysalis may represent outstanding engineering, but as a thing of beauty it's an abject failure.  Their chrysalis condo is simply their crash pad while God works the wonders of metamorphosis.

When the butterfly finally emerges from the chrysalis, a miracle has happened.  The  former ugly duckling is now a thing of beauty.  Colors splash across its wings, and the former slug like plant eater now enjoys the freedom of flight.  It spends the rest of its days flying from flower to flower sucking up the nectar of life.

Everybody likes butterflies.  These delicate flying palates of color remind us how much God loves beautiful things.  God didn't have to make them beautiful.   He could have made them look like flying slugs; just attach drab wings to a caterpillar's body, and the job is done.

Perhaps God made butterflies to teach us lessons about life and make us more tolerant and less judgmental.  We are all a work in progress and although were not butterflies yet, we can't become butterflies without first being caterpillars.  We've got to eat a lot of leaves and do a lot of growing before we blossom into our final state.  Just as you can't judge a book by its cover, you can't judge a caterpillar by its color.  The caterpillar might not look like much now, but when God gets done with it, it will become a creature of splendor.

Judging people harshly in their caterpillar stage is a big mistake.  They are a work in progress, and what you see is not the finished product.  Right now, a person may not look like much, but when God finishes working his miracle,  a new person painted by God's palette of love will emerge in awesome beauty.

Don't be quick to judge yourself in a harsh manner either; you also are a work in progress.  Your caterpillar stage might not seem like fun, but God knows what He is doing.  You have to be a caterpillar before you can become a butterfly; there is no other way.  God is working behind the scenes, taking care of the details, and things are going to work out.

God has a dream for your life that is better than you can imagine.  When you get into agreement with His plan, there's no limit to how good your life can become.


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