“Once upon a time in a forest on the outskirts of Manchester lived a little white moth. Not just any white moth but an English peppered moth. It had fragile white wings peppered with tiny black spots. During the day the little white moth played hide and seek around the barks of the trees. It was easy for the little white moth to hide himself because the tree trunks were also white peppered with tiny black spots. He was a happy moth because no one could see him and the wicked sharp beaks of nasty birds never came close.
One day a rich man with lots of money built a factory. It had a tall chimney. Day by day the chimney belched out clouds of inky black soot into the sky. The black clouds floated over the forest and tiny specks of soot coated the trees. The leaves turned slowly black. The branches turned black. The trunks of the trees turned black.
Everyone could see the little white moth. He fluttered here and there, darting away from angry beaks and sharp claws. He was no longer happy and longed for the days when the tree bark was white. Sadly he crept under a leaf, folding his little white wings as close as he could.
Hanging from under the same leaf was a cocoon. It was black and shiny, hard and ugly. Suddenly, it wobbled just very slightly. Something interesting was happening. The little white moth had nothing else to do so he watched the cocoon. Ever so slowly, ever so quietly, the cocoon broke open. First came a delicate head with tiny antennae probing the air. Next were two tiny legs, small but strong. Ever so slowly, and ever so quietly a moth emerged the cocoon and stretched out its wings.
Where the little white moth had white wings and tiny black spots, this new arrival also had white wings but the black spots were so big you would have to look very carefully to see the white bits. With a polite nod, he stretched out his wings and launched himself into the air. The little white moth watched him for a while playing the in dappled sunlight. He thought he should warn him about the angry beaks and the sharp claws.
As the moth landed on the tree bark, he could no longer be seen. The tree trunks which had once been so white, were now dark with soot and the little moth was safe.”
A nice story and for the most part entirely true. I wish my Biology book at school had told it that way. The English peppered moth changed the colour of its wings to match the colour of the tree trunks that became coated in soot just after the Industrial revolution. Charles Darwin and his theory of natural selection was fluttering round in moth form in a forest on the outskirts of Manchester. Apparently years later with the introduction of the Clean Air Act, factories stopped vomiting the black smoke out their chimneys. The tree trunks became white again and so did the English peppered moth.The world the little white moths were designed to live in was soot free. Factories spat out pollution and things changed. The little white moth developed a defence mechanism that ensured his survival.
In the beginning…we know the story, how it all began, and how much God was delighted with what he made. That is the world that people were designed to live in. Sin free and in fellowship with God. That‘s the world I was designed to live in. However, three chapters in and the story changes. Disobedience belches sin into the world and everything gets tarred. People develop all sorts of mechanisms to survive, like lying and stealing and murder.
You know what? I am not designed to live in this world. I don’t want to develop mechanisms to survive. I want the original world back! God has dealt with the sin issue. Just as the disobedience of one man, and a woman, bought sin into the world, so the obedience of another brought grace. That is the world I was designed for – the world full of grace. I refuse to change to fit in to this altered world, but I will live my life the way I was designed to live. The Holy Spirit spark that ignited my spirit will be allowed to burn and to grow in my life.
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