I used to live in a shell and it was warm and safe in there.
I had no one except myself because there was no room in my shell for anyone else. My shell was only big enough for me and, at the time, that was fine because I believed I didn’t need anyone else. However, sometimes it did seem kind of dark and lonely inside, and once in a while I would open the shell just wide enough to peek out, but if anyone attempted to get too close I would quickly close my shell and hide.
I didn’t have to worry about getting hurt because my shell was very tough and no one could penetrate it.
I lived inside my shell for many years and was, for the most part, content.
Then, one day, I got a bit too curious and opened my shell a little too wide, and it cracked!
Some light began to shine in through the crack and it disturbed me. I tried to block it out but I couldn’t so gradually I began to accept it.
My life changed somewhat because of that tiny bit of light. Things were ever so slightly brighter and sometimes through the crack I would catch a glimpse of the life that was passing me by. This aroused my curiosity and caused me to wonder about things I had previously not thought about.
Then, one day, a tiny seed fell through the crack. It nestled into my small, cozy shell and began to irritate me. I tried to get rid of it by ignoring it, but it kept rolling around and rubbing me and I could not seem to find the contentment I had previously known because of this seed’s presence. The seed soon began to grow larger and larger until there was barely room for it and me inside my shell.
It was then I realized that this was the seed of discontent and I wondered what I could do.
Instinctively, I prayed and asked God for help. I told Him the whole story and sought His solution to my dilemma. Would He get rid of this seed, repair the crack in my shell and restore me to my former life once again? Would He indeed help me?
I waited and wondered for God’s response, and then one day He came by and smashed my shell all to pieces!
I cried out in pain and self-pity!
How could a loving God do this to me!
I was thrust out into the big, bright world!
I felt so alone and afraid as I looked at my shell lying in pieces all around me. I felt so vulnerable. I was not able to hide any longer, and the security that I had from my shell was gone. I felt I was left to face the world alone and I thought I would be easy prey because I was without any protection.
But God said: “My child, you are not alone. I am here with you. My arms can be your security. When you are afraid or lonely, run to Me and hide under the shadow of My wings. Seek Me when you are fearful. Ask of Me when you are curious. I can be all things to you, and you can be all things in Me.”
So, I listened and learned from Him. He protected me, taught me about life, and provided for my needs. When I was weak, He was strong. He became my All in all.
I began to rejoice in the fact that He broke my shell because in doing so He set me free to experience life!
His wisdom led me into so many new and exciting things. Each day I would walk and talk with Him, or laugh and run with Him. He was new to me each morning and a comfort to me each night. I thanked Him each day for my new life in Him.
Now, I don’t even miss that old shell anymore because each day God takes a piece of it and fits it into a new covering for me. It is a covering that He is designing to be a reflection of Him. It is not a shell, but it is more like a cube of glass, through which His light shines and reflects on others.
I am so thankful for this new reflective covering because perhaps one day His light will shine into the crack of someone else’s shell and they will be brought out into a new life just as I was.
— Leona J. Atkinson