I am sure that by now you will all agree with me that butterflies are simply exquisite. It is interesting that we usually find butterflies amongst equally beautiful flowers. In fact, it is safe to say that where there are flowers we will find butterflies nearby. Butterflies need flowers and fruit to provide nourishment and water for them. Flowers and plants also provide shelter and a safe home for them in order to lay their eggs.
Butterflies are especially attracted to flowers with a strong scent as this tells them that they will find the sweetest nectar there. They also prefer flowers with soft petals protected from the wind to land on rather than plants with spikes. Butterflies are fragile and therefore they choose their environment carefully.
We as humans are very much the same. We also search out safe havens for ourselves and surround ourselves with beauty. We look for nourishment, not only for our bodies, but our souls as well. We need a shelter that can protect us against the storms of life. Most of us crave "la Dulce vita" - the sweet life. We yearn for a place of acceptance and loving care, a place where we can simply be.
My question today is this: am I such a place for my loved ones, my friends, the people who cross my path? Do I give them a safe place to fall, a haven from the storm? Am I that sweet smelling flower calling them home or do I have sharp spiky words that cut through their souls, tearing them apart? Do I provide them with nourishment or do I poison them with criticism and negativity? Am I a gentle green meadow with a softly flowing river where weary travelers can find a moment's rest? Or am I a cactus, prickly and quick to be hurtful?
In this harsh, rat-racing world, we need to provide a place of
peace, not only for the people we love, but also for the battered and bruised butterflies that flutter through our lives. People are irresistibly drawn to those who exude beauty, kindness and a sweet fragrance. Unfortunately, it often is in such short supply. It is sad that many people find it far easier to give a sarcastic or snappy answer instead of words of healing or encouragement. What a truly wonderful world this would be if we could rather be each others' welcoming shelters, a place where the welcome mat is always out...