|Photo courtesy of Amy Freeman|
The Butterfly Effect
By Amy Freeman
I love butterflies! Anyone who knows me knows that this is a true and discernible fact about me. People always ask me why I love them so much, and I tell them, “I love their bright and vibrant colors. I’m just so amazed at how God takes the green, fat and fuzzy caterpillar and transforms it into a beautifully unique, flying butterfly.” Also, watching butterflies flitter and flutter about always lifts my spirits and makes me feel happy.
However, that’s not the point of my story. Last year, Shelley noticed that I was really struggling with my identity in Christ and she encouraged me to watch a 45-minute video by John Lynch called TrueFaced Two Roads Message. This video changed my life! Shelley then encouraged me to the read “The Cure,” written by John Lynch, Bruce McNicol, and Bill Thrall. “The Cure” asks the question, ‘What if God isn’t who you think He is and neither are you?’
Those two questions became very important for me, because I realized that I saw God’s character and nature through the lens of shame that my sins had created in my life. A person who lives their life through the lens of shame, many times, sees God as distant, uncaring and disappointed in our inability to sin less. Therefore, we believe that He's constantly waiting for us to fall short, sin and mess up so that He can pounce on us and tell us how badly we’ve disappointed Him, failed Him and let Him down, yet again. I was, and at times still am, living my life in that cycle of shame. However, as I read “The Cure,” I began recognizing the lies that I believed about God, and He then began to reveal that His character and His nature overflows from a heart of Love and Grace. Through that revelation God began uncovering the lies that I believed about myself.
Satan is a very crafty manipulator. Every time I sin, he’s waiting right there and whispers in my ear lies about my identity. “Amy, if anyone truly knew your sinful nature, they’d abandon you in a second and be totally disgusted with you.” Worse yet, Satan likes to play off of my own insecurities, beating me down. “No one can ever truly love you Amy,” and “You’ll die alone because you don’t deserve happiness.”
“The Cure” explains, “We can never resolve our sin by working on it” ourselves; instead it’s about trusting in who God really is and what He says about my identity (16). On my worst day, I am “Christ in Amy!” I’m still learning and understanding this truth. It’s a process to understand the discrepancy between who we appear to be and who we truly are.
John Lynch illustrates this truth really well, and I believe that God placed it in “The Cure” specifically for me, not only because I love butterflies, but also because I identify with butterflies.
John asks the reader to consider the caterpillar. He explains that if he took a caterpillar to a biologist, and they examined the DNA of the caterpillar, it would possess the DNA of a BUTTERFLY, not a caterpillar!! John exclaims, “Wow! God has wired into a creature looking nothing like a butterfly a perfectly complete butterfly identity” (49). You see, when we accept Christ as our Savior, our nature is fused with Christ’s, and we begin the process of maturing into our identity that is fused in Christ. So, right now as I am growing and seeking God, I am maturing more and more each day into the identity of Christ in Amy. I’m not perfect, nor will I ever be perfect until Christ returns, but I am being changed and renewed – it’s all just a part of the process of learning my identity in Christ and growing into who Christ says I am.
Amy Freeman, editor for the C4C Blog, in her own words:
Hi! My name is Amy and I’m honored to get to be a Church 4 Chicks volunteer. I am currently finishing my Bachelors in English at Kennesaw State and I will graduate either this Fall or next Spring, depending on if I stay and finish a writing minor. I’m a member of the Literary Club and currently secretary of Sigma Tau Delta, the English Honors Club. I also wrote for the KSU Sentinel during Spring Semester. I live in Cartersville, GA with my 2 adorable doggies, Ella and Brody and my mom lives with me as well. I attend West Ridge - Cartersville Campus, and I love serving in the toddler room for KidzQuest Jr. I love spending time with my friends and my doggies, just hanging out and having fun. I love to be out in God’s nature and take pictures of flowers, sunsets and of course, BUTTERFLIES.