Butterflies & Freeways

Jon Burgess


15“If you love me, obey my commandments. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. 17He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you. John 14:15-17


Jesus could see the panic in the eyes of His disciples as he talked of going away to prepare a better place for them. How could He do this? How could He leave them so soon? How would they traverse the challenges of this world without Him? Turns out they didn't have to! Jesus encouraged them to be on the look out for the Holy Spirit. Through the Holy Spirit, God would not only be around them and above them, but in them! They would see things others could not see because they would be looking for Him!


This is the phrase that caught my attention this morning while sitting stuck in traffic on my way to the New Hope offices on Sand Island. I was listening to the audio of our Life Journal reading on my YouVersion App and I heard this like I never have before- "The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him." I then began to ask myself the question, "Am I looking for Him? Am I looking for the moving of the Holy Spirit? I know He is in me and fills me, but am I looking for what He is doing around me? Am I so distracted by the demands of life and stuck in the traffic of the tyrrany of the urgent that I'm not looking for Him? It wasn't long after these questions started going through my head that I noticed a butterfly flitting by my car window. First of all, it's obvious how slow the traffic was that I would even notice this butterfly. Secondly, God used it to drive home the point of His Word this morning. I couldn't help but smile. Though life is filled with freeway realities He has called me to fly above it. Through the Holy Spirit I can see what I would have otherwise missed. He gives me a different persepective. The Holy Spirit was sent to transform me from a caterpillar grounded by natural limitations into a butterfly flying above it. Though, even as I write this, it sounds a little too "hippie" for my liking I can't ignore the contrast. All of us stuck in our cars, traffic, stress, demands, schedules, the weight of the world on our shoulders while sitting on a freeway. Then, out of the blue, a beautiful brown and orange butterfly, not inhibited in the slightest by our traffic, flies by on it's way to do whatever butterflies do. This symbol of freedom, this rare sighting of beauty in an otherwise dismal scenario is what the Holy Spirit has called me to see, has called me to be!


Lord, You have called me to be in the world, but not of it. You sent the Holy Spirit to show me how to live differently, to be a butterfly on the freeway. Forgive me for getting so caught up in what I have to do that I haven't been looking to see what You're doing! What a witness it would be to show the world a life of freedom in Christ! You are the way through the trials and tribulations of this world. I don't have to spend my days weighed down by the cares of this world. Through the power of the Holy Spirit I will rise above it!

Devotions for August 12

Jeremiah 10,11,12
John 14

Start Doing Devotions

Devotions are an important part of everyday life. Click here to learn how to do devotions.