Broken Wings


The teaser for a feature segment on a local TV station promised a story about a monarch butterfly, a meteorologist, and super glue. It worked–I was curious, and I watched the story.

I knew that this is the time of year monarchs are preparing for their migration south. They are enjoying the nectar of the last, ragged zinnias; braving prickly lavender thistles; and resting in the clouds of purple aster blossoms before they fly to Mexico.

Except the butterfly in the news. Her wings weren’t working, and she wasn’t going anywhere.

The meteorologist in this story is also a pilot and has repaired airplane wings, so he has a special set of skills. He carefully glued the butterfly’s wings back together–twice. He and his girlfriend had compassion for the monarch and showed mercy.


What if our wings are broken, and we can’t fly? What if life injures us so badly that we can’t do the things we were created to do? We need someone who knows how to rebuild our lives, someone who knows how to fly, someone with skill, someone with power . . . and lots of super glue.

We need a mighty Savior who is the great Healer.


When John the Baptist’s messengers came to Jesus and asked Him if He was The One (the Messiah), Jesus answered with the prophetic words of Isaiah.

Go back to John and tell him all you have seen and heard here today: how those who were blind can see. The lame are walking without a limp. The lepers are completely healed. The deaf can hear again. The dead come back to life. And the poor are hearing the Good News.   Luke 7:22   TLB


Jesus was The One. The one with the skill, the knowledge, and the power to heal us, body and soul.

In Jesus we find more than just the ability to help us–He wants to help us.

He is gracious and kind and extends mercy and grace to each of us. Even if physical healing isn’t His best plan for us in this world, he offers healing for our sin-damaged souls and compassion to comfort our broken hearts.


But I will restore you to health
    and heal your wounds,’ declares the Lord,

Jeremiah 30:17   NIV

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God, pick up the pieces.
Put me back together again.
    Jeremiah 17:14   MSG


 I bless the holy name of God with all my heart.  Yes, I will bless the Lord and not forget the glorious things he does for me.   Psalm 103:1,2   TLB

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He forgives all my sins. He heals me. He ransoms me from hell. He surrounds me with loving-kindness and tender mercies.   Psalm 103:3,4   TLB

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He is merciful and tender toward those who don’t deserve it; he is slow to get angry and full of kindness and love.  Psalm 103:8   TLB

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Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.   2 Corinthians 4:17   MSG

So even if your wings are splinted and super-glued together, the Lord is healing you.

You will fly again.


That butterfly in the news story, perched on the woman”s shoulder–do you remember her name?

It’s “Grace.” Her name means “kindness, love, mercy.” The little monarch received mercy and grace, and so can we.

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.   Hebrews 4:16   NIV

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All photos (except zinnias) by Barb Briggs

Posted on September 24, 2015, in Devotional and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.

  1. Thank you, Connie, for weaving together such a beautiful story of brokenness and healing, of being grounded and taking wing again. We may never fly quite the same again, but we do fly (we just have to watch out for the ceiling fans!)

    • Thanks, Barb, for providing the photographic inspiration for this post (and others). I was struck by how careful, how gentle John McLaughlin had to be when working on the fragile wings of a live butterfly. Then I saw all the verses about God’s tender mercies, and I could envision how gently God deals with us.

  2. The other comments are so graceful.

    All I can say is, Crap. I’m a former merc, a killer by training and inclination, and you got me crying and I can’t stop.

    All because of a butterfly that someone cared enough to save.

    • It’s because you have a tender heart under that crusty exterior, Andrew. : )
      I debated how to address the fact that not everyone is healed physically here and now, so I included the 2 Corinthians 4:17 verse.
      May God continue to do His work on your “inside,” where He is healing and making new life.

  3. Yes, we need a mighty savior, that sure….and God is making new life !!! That’s good

  4. Beautiful words. Beautiful butterflies. Jesus is able to heal our brokenness. I am studying the book of Acts now. Jesus not only heals us, he gives us the Holy Spirit with salvation. We are guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit.

  5. I LOVED the photos. I’m a butterfly addict! And like the Words being shared and used. Bless you!

  6. Constance,
    I love butterflies …they have a special place in my heart…what a touching and encouraging story of the butterfly and of God’s great tender grace to heal us and that He wants to, as you pointed out, such great grace…So grateful….Thanks for blessing me 🙂

  7. What a beautiful post, Constance…He is our great Hope and our gentle Healer! I always get excited to see migrating monarchs and my sons and I have “raised” a few monarchs after finding their eggs.

  8. How wonderful is it that these people were inspired to help and then in turn God used it to bring an encouraging message and word to us? God is so good. 🙂 Thanks Constance.

    • I love it when a post comes together like that. I’m glad to bring a little encouragement your way. God is indeed good to have brought that news story to my attention. Thanks for stopping to read and leave a comment, Jason!

  9. Lori Schumaker of Seaching for Moments

    Oh, goodness, Constance! Once again I loooooove the photos! So beautiful! Such a perfect illustration of the God’s perfect love and mercy!
    Blessings and smiles,

    • The butterfly photos by my friend, Barb, are certainly inspirational. I’ll pass on the compliment.
      That serendipitous news story aired last week not long after I saw the photos. It is a great picture of God’s gentleness and tender mercies.
      Thanks, Lori, for stopping by and taking the time to comment!

  10. Your pictures are stunning! The beauty leaps off the page. Your story of how we are saved by Christ and the connection you made to the story of the monarch butterfly reached me in a place I needed today. Healing is possible and it is in Christ we become whole. Visiting you from #TellHisStory today.

  11. What amazing images – in word and picture. Thanks for linking with #SmallWonder.

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