It came to me the other day that the time to which we are headed could be envisaged much as a chrysalis. Right now the church in the Western world is doing a pretty good impression of a browsing caterpillar – fat, slow, lazy and not particularly attractive for the most part.
But if there’s one thing we should learn from the Bible, it is that God does not give up on us. Even in the midst of judgment he is saving His people, even if they don’t much like the prospect of the methods of salvation.
Hence, now, the chrysalis. Encased by the hard realities and persecutions that will befall us, God will do a remarkable work of transformation. All the current structures and our methods of doing church, all the boundaries that we have drawn between fellow Christians, all the ways we have drawn and defined ourselves, will be broken and remoulded at the most fundamental level.
Note too, that there is no fresh injection of material, nobody else to step forward and be Church – it will be us. That’s something else to learn from the Bible – that God does not provide superheroes, but uses ordinary people for extraordinary things.
The end result, what will emerge from the chrysalis, will be a Church transformed, beautiful in the eyes of God.