As a homeschooling mom, I looked for opportunities to teach my daughters. The perfect one came in the form of a cocoon. It wasn't a little cocoon but a rather large one. The cocoon was placed in a jar (with air holes) and Herbie was brought to the table every morning, just in case he decided to make his appearance.
The girls created an image of what they thought Herbie would be. They envisioned a beautiful butterfly filled with vibrant colors. The day came and the cocoon revealed a large, dull brown moth. The girls were excited and I was disappointed. I wanted them to have the experience of seeing something beautiful emerge. Little did I know that Herbie was their "something beautiful".
Both girls carried the jar around like Herbie was their greatest prized possession. They spoke lovingly to him, telling him that he was going to be free to spread his wings. They marveled over every move that he made. Finally, the time came for him to be released. I was semi-relieved. The "ugly" moth was going to find his way. But then, something changed inside of me when I saw the joy and then sadness on my girls faces. They were literally tearing up at the thought of saying goodbye to Herbie.
Today, I reflected on how the crowds waved palm branches upon Jesus' arrival that Sunday, shouting, "Hosanna" and on Friday, they shouted, "Crucify him!" How could their stereotype of who Jesus was one day, change so drastically? What caused that change?
People had their own perception of who Jesus was and what he was going to do. They saw and hoped that he would be a warrior and king that would overthrow the Roman empire. Instead he came as a servant, laying down his life for mankind.
That's the beauty of the resurrection story! If Jesus had come galloping down the road on a white horse and clothed in royal robes, would he have been welcomed or rejected? In his sinlessness, he humbled himself. I have to be honest here. I don't think I would've been humble if it meant saving my life. I imagine I would've said, "Wait! Don't you know who I am? I'm God's daughter, and...ahem, sinless, I may add. Can't you cut me a little slack? I don't know about this crucifying stuff. I'm really not much into torture and the sight of nails makes me want to faint." What makes this even more beautiful is that even when Jesus rose from the grave, he had every opportunity to say, "Told you so!" but instead he appeared before his disciples (even walking through a locked door) to show them who he was.
Once the girls had said their goodbyes, they released Herbie. Instead of flying away, Herbie stayed close by, for five days, clinging to the window screen. On the sixth day, the girls went out to look for Herbie but he was gone. Herbie had moved on to continue his life story. Jesus is more than just A life story. He is OUR life story. He rose from the grave so that we may have life. Now THAT'S what I call beauty.
16 minutes ago