Posts Tagged ‘suffering’


A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared.
He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to squeeze its body through the tiny hole. Then it stopped, as if it couldn’t go further.

So the man decided to help the butterfly. He took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bits of cocoon. The butterfly emerged easily but it had a swollen body and shrivelled wings.

The man continued to watch it, expecting that any minute the wings would enlarge and expand enough to support the body, Neither happened. In fact the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around.

It was never able to fly.

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand: The restricting cocoon and the struggle required by the butterfly to get through the opening was a way of forcing the fluid from the body into the wings so that it would be ready for flight once that was achieved.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our lives. Going through life with no obstacles would cripple us. We will not be as strong as we could have been and we would never fly.

This week, may God show you that your struggle is your path to strength. May you overcome your obstacles, beat your wings and may you learn to fly.


A butterfly went out at noonimage
And waltzed above a stream,
Then stepped straight through the firmament
And rested on a beam;

The butterfly then bore away
Upon a shining sea,—
Though never yet, in any port,
Its coming mentioned be.

If spoken by the distant bird,
If met in ether sea
By frigate or by merchantman,
Report was not to me.

– Emily Dickenson


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Tears in Heaven was an iconic song written by Eric Clapton and Will Jennings about the pain Clapton felt following the death of his four-year-old son, Conor, who fell from a window of a New York apartment, on March 20, 1991. Clapton, who arrived at the apartment shortly after the accident, was visibly distraught for months afterwards. This song is one of Clapton’s most successful, reaching #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in the U.S.

Clapton stopped playing it in 2004. He was reported saying; “I didn’t feel the loss anymore, which is so much a part of performing those songs. I really have to connect with the feelings that were there when I wrote them. They’re kind of gone and I really don’t want them to come back, particularly. My life is different now. They probably just need a rest and maybe I’ll introduce them for a much more detached point of view.”

I’ve been a fan of Eric Clapton for a long time. I can’t imagine the level of pain and suffering Clapton went through with his experience of losing his son.  I can imagine that there were plenty of tears in heaven.  The song gets me every time.  There are plenty of examples of people who have suffered more than they should, where there is no explanation, where people point their finger at God and say, “Where were you?” At the time there are no answers, God is always there, but at the time, it is usually of little comfort.  Often it is only later that we find God was there in the middle of it all.

I came across this in Psalm 56: 8:

 You keep track of all my sorrows.
 You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
 You have recorded each one in your book.

I’m not sure why God would collect our tears in a bottle and record each one, but it is somehow comforting.  Here’s my reflection on how I believe God is there with us through the hard times.

Collect Your Tears

For all those times
As you held your fears
I held you tight
When you wept your tears

For all those times
When you felt so scared
I drew you close
As I always cared

For all those times
When you felt alone
My angels comforted you
And led you home

In all those times
I wept with you
In all your tears
I cried them too

So just be still
And know I am here
I know your sorrow
As I collect your tears

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