Out of my kitchen window, I notice butterflies flitting in and out of the late summer flowers in full bloom. I dash out with my camera/phone in hand to snap a few of these miracles landing here and there, but I’m so distracted by their colors, sizes, and industry, I can’t concentrate on just one shot!

The butterflies are intent on their critical jobs at hand. I imagine I hear them sucking and slurping as they probe into a bloom, slowly swaying back and forth to a silent beat. Do the wings’ rhythmic dancing like a metrenone help them suck up the nectar, I wonder?

While I distractedly meander, my legs brush up against the Blue Mist Flowers hugging the curved pathways and a cloud of monarchs floats up. I stand transfixed in this lively, exquisite cloud, inhaling the enchanted air as they flutter, some kissing my bare arms whispering, “thank you!” I imagine they’re thanking me for planting their favorite flowers.

I’m reminded of the verse in Hebrews that speaks of the “cloud of witnesses” who have passed on; my beloved parents, siblings, and friends whose memories and legacies still inspire me to live in faithful gratitude. They are “witnesses” whose lives, works, sufferings, and joys attest to my own strengths and weaknesses, joys, and sorrows.

I breathe in their succor and breathe out my prayers. Thank you, my sweet butterflies, for remiding me from where my source of strength comes.


Can you visualize and thank your “cloud of witnesses?”

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders…

Hebrews 12:1

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