Behold the creeping worm!
(Thomas Guthrie, 1803-1873)
Behold the creeping worm — it is bred in corruption — it crawls on the ground — its food is the coarsest fare.
But in time, it undergoes its wonderful metamorphosis. The wriggling caterpillar — becomes a winged and painted butterfly! And at this change, along with its old skin — it casts off its old habits and instincts. Now, it has a will as well as wings to fly. Now . . .
its bed is the bosom of a flower,
its food is the honeyed nectar,
its home is the sunny air, and
new instincts animate its frame.
The change within, corresponds to the change without. It now spurns the ground — and, as you may gather from its merry, mazy dance — the creature is happy, and delights in the new duties which it is called to perform.
Just so it is in that change which grace works in sinners!
Their nature is now so accommodated to their redeemed state,
their wishes are so fitted to their wants,
their hopes are so fitted to their prospects,
their aspirations are so fitted to their honors,
and their will is so fitted to their work —
that they would be less content to return to their old polluted pleasures — than the beautiful butterfly would desire to be stripped of its silken wings, and condemned to pass its days amid the old, foul garbage, its former food!