the urgency of breaking free

the urgency of breaking free cartoon by nakedpastor david hayward
“The Urgency of Breaking Free” by David Hayward

You must break free! I say “break” because any freedom worth having means breaking away from slavery and bondage. It means leaving something behind, breaking away from it. Like this caterpillar and butterfly realize, true transformation is traumatic. But it is urgently necessary.

I have friends who run a butterfly house. I’ve watched them receive the chrysalides from exotic lands and prepare them so the butterflies can emerge from the cocoon safely and populate the house with their beauty. It is a very very delicate process… from the collecting to the shipping to the pinning to the hatching to the drying to their first flight. Watching the butterflies work to break free is profoundly moving to me. The whole process is at once tender and traumatic.

You must break free! To remain where you are will be the death of you. You intuitively know this. But we hesitate because we predict the trauma. We foresee the crisis.

I am equally moved by the people who go through this process. I love helping them. It is a tender time when they are especially vulnerable to predators. So much could go wrong. But it is also a traumatic time when they need encouragement and sometimes assistance. The courage these people must muster is breathtaking. But those who are serious find it. From beginning to end, this is the bible’s predominant theme.

I was talking to a good friend yesterday about her profound transformation. The courage, the risk, the change! But her life is more beautiful than before. Fuller. Larger. And she knows it.

You can do it. No, you must! You must break free!

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  • Adam Julians

    Love it!

    At a comedy gig I performed in a few moths ago, one of my comedy tutors introduced me as someone who started off shy and now had become a beautiful butterfly.

    The process as you say David, is not easy but it’s worth going thought the hardship for then end results :).

    Reminds me also of “The Man in the Arena” speech by Roosevelt.

    And with that in mind – I’m heading off to slay some dragons ……….

  • Loved this. I broke free from the clutches of dogma and doctrine about a year ago. There is an initial moment of relief and joy, but it isn’t always easy realizing that there is so much uncertainty in life as to its nature and ours. It leads one on the most precarious of journeys. Great post.

  • Thanks Jess

  • Gary

    Coming up on 2 years free of the cocoon. We might start celebrating it as a type of anniversary. lol

  • Carol

    I am neither a biblical literalist, not a dogmatic literalist.

    A lot of our doctrines are useful when they are interpreted metaphorically and/or relationally instead of literally and ontologically.

    There is a Buddhist sect, I’ve forgotten which one, that prophesizes that the next Divine Revelation will be as a community transformed by love. My first thought was, “Well, then it probably won’t come out of the Christian Tradition.

    Some time later I realized that it was already part of the Christian Tradition, the Trinitarian Mystery is a community of Persons held togethy by their mutual kenotic love. Human communities are usually created and sustained by common beliefs, interests, passions, etc. These natural bonds of affection exclude those who don’t share them as well as include those who do.
    Only love, something we are all capable of, can be binding without being exclusionary as well as inclusive.