Many people know I am a photographer and I recently took pictures of a girl who is a senior this year in a neighboring county. As she was changing, her mother opened up to me and began to tell me a story. I am always interested in people’s lives, so I quietly listened. Two years ago, she was a mother of three who had never gone on vacation. She left her teen-age children for a few days with a caretaker and headed off for a mini vacation in which was much needed, although she was quiet apprehensive about leaving. She explained there were a curfew, however the rules had been changed and the caretaker provided a little more freedom than this strict mother. As her seventeen-year-old daughter drove her boyfriend home she lost control of the car and crashed. The boy died instantly with a broken neck. Neither of them was wearing their seat belts. Her daughter only lived minutes but had the opportunity for a bystander to come and pray with and for her during these last few seconds of her life.
The mother went on to explain briefly the emotions a parent goes through when you lose a child. She didn’t leave the house for three months but she pulled herself through knowing she had two other children to raise. Her daughter was scheduled to get her senior pictures the following week after that vacation. She relived some of the memories as we drove around looking for photo locations. She talked about how her daughter was full of energy and life. So here she is today with her other daughter getting her pictures made. It has been a very rough and a struggle two years in letting her children go anywhere, living with the thought something might happen to them.
She had always told her children if something ever happened to her as if she died unexpectedly, when they see a butterfly, remember her. During the graveside service a butterfly flew by and landed on the top of her casket. It was a sign as if to say, ‘remember me’ as her mother had once told her.
During our photo shoot, we went to my daddy’s flower garden that he plants for me every year just so I can take pictures. There are always butterflies there and I was hoping to catch one flying by in one of her daughter’s pictures. Below is a picture in which I created for her mother in memory of her daughters.
A butterfly is a beautiful creature however it must look as though it has lost all life before it truly finds freedom. It is changing from one form to another. It is a promise that life has only begun when you reach this stage in life. As I reflect on this story, my thoughts when I see the butterfly will never be the same.
Jesus Christ paid the price for each one of us to find this true freedom. It is an example, although one may appear to be dead, one can be alive in Christ, not only here on earth but also for eternity. Treasure your memories with your loved ones now and be thankful for the time you have with them. Give no thought of tomorrow for it may never come, remember life is a vapor here on earth. Plan for eternity for it is there we will be reunited with those who have gone on before us. Set our eyes on Jesus Christ and live for Him, it is the only way to find peace and comfort through difficult times. We must remember His promises and the butterfly.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I never cease to be thankful in what life you have brought to me through knowing and experiencing you. I treasure the life you have given me here but I yearn for your presence in eternity. I thank you for this story about the butterfly and the promise of life. In Jesus name. Amen.
Give no thought of tomorrow.
Life is but a vapor.
Jesus came to give us life and freedom.
James 4:14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
Romans 8:11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.