A Christian is like a butterfly. He wasn't always a butterfly. He once was a destructive, voracious, self-serving caterpillar. Then, at a time wholly unexpected, he changed. He gave up his feeding to hide in a cocoon. When the time was right, he came out a different creature. Christ controls this change, and when we give our lives over to Him to control, the transformation is just as obvious in us as well.
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
All things are new to the Christian. We are subject to the control of the wind (the Holy Spirit living within us). We treat one another differently (loving one another honestly, not sappily). We value the things of God and the things God values rather than what made us happy before. Our lives are made pure, though they once were defiled with sin. The purpose of our life is no longer inward, but Godward. The Bible comes alive, worship services are glorious gatherings of Believers, and the inward battle is as strong as the world's repulsion over what has become of us.
Yet, there is a beauty in what God has created in each of us who are true Christians. That beauty is found in our purity that Christ has given us. That beauty is found in the spiritual gifts He has given us to encourage others to go on for Him in a world of opposition. That beauty is in the integrity that exists now where dishonesty resided a moment before. And so the true Christian is not one who professes to love the Lord and follow Him; the truth Christian does so outwardly as well as inwardly. The true Christian seeks baptism as a means of publicly demonstrating unity with Christ, marking the change that has happened inside as the beginning of a change of behavior on the outside as a result. A true Christian cannot say he is saved, and then willfully embrace sinful thoughts and activities as acceptable. A true Christian will lay aside the filthy ways of living and not continue in them.
Our young people are often taught to think that living together is acceptable before marriage in the eyes of the LORD. It is not. Our young people are taught that love means celebration, so love for all means celebrating all things. Yet, God is not that way. He knows some ways are destructive and certainly contrary to His character. A transformed believer will not demonstrate those lifestyles, practices and beliefs because they betray the nature of the God they love, the Savior they adore, and the righteousness they have received from Jesus Christ.
And so, the Butterfly's transformation resembles the Christian's transformation. We must leave behind the old caterpillar life to live fully the life of the free-floating Butterfly, and experience the newness of life in Jesus!