2 Thessalonians 2:13

The word ‘sanctification’ means to be set apart.  Scripture says that believers are set apart for the glory of God.  We are sanctified through the power of God’s Spirit.  This refers both to conversion as well as spiritual progress in the Christian life. In a mysterious way, the Holy Spirit uses the difficult experiences of our lives to strengthen and build our faith as He sanctifies us and makes us more like Christ.

Sometime ago, I read something about the emperor moth and the way that it is transformed from a worm that crawls into a beautiful insect that flies.  Its cocoon is shaped in a unique way.  To develop into a perfect insect, the moth has to force its way through the neck of its cocoon with hours of intense struggle.  Entomologists explain that this pressure is nature’s way of forcing life-giving substance into its wings. Well, wanting to lessen the seemingly needless trials and struggles of the moth, one observer thought to himself, “I’ll lessen the pain and struggles of this helpless creature!”  And so with a small pair of scissors, he snipped the restraining threads to make the moth’s emergence painless and effortless.  But do you want to know what happened?  The creature never developed wings.  For a brief time before its death, it simply crawled around, rather than soaring through the air on colorful wings.  If only the moth had been allowed to finish its struggling, its life would have been transformed into beauty.

Much in the same way, the Spirit uses our sorrows, our suffering, our trials, and our heartaches in this life and puts us in a ‘cocoon’ of transformation. Struggle today means strength tomorrow.  Today’s crisis is tomorrow’s crown.

For more, read Romans 8:18-30