Butterfly Christianity

Butterfly Christianity

Butterfly Christianity, written by Mari-Anna Stålnacke
Photo by Alfred Schrock on Unsplash

How do you spend your time? What do you do in your free time? What kind of a Christian are you? Yes, these are some deep questions, but they’re worth pondering on. Charles Spurgeon preached about Butterfly Christianity. You’d think he was talking about it in a good way…like a butterfly, Christian would be one who is developing and becoming a person of grace. But no. Quite the opposite, actually.

Spurgeon writes, “My dear friend, Dr. Taylor, of New York, speaks of some Christians nowadays as having a “butterfly Christianity.” When time, and strength, and thought, and talent are all spent upon mere amusement, what else are men and women but mere butterflies?” 

I don’t want to be this kind of butterfly Christian. But this is what the world tells us to do. There’s nothing wrong with having recreational activities. We need to take care of our physical bodies, so doing sports is good. So is playing an instrument or reading a book. But if your whole life is centered on having fun, and entertaining yourself as best you can, there really is something wrong with your worldview. That is not how Jesus wants us to spend our precious years on earth. 

Jesus did not call us to spend our time as we see fit. No. Jesus told us to drink deep from the well of grace and then go and tell others the good news. He told us to take care of our neighbors and do what is good in God’s eyes. Are we doing this? Especially, when it is God who provides his strength and wisdom and everything we need so we can do what he calls us to do.         

Butterfly Christianity

I think it is time to start fighting against Butterfly Christianity by asking God what he wants each of us to do. How God wants us to use our time and resources. There are so many mission organizations without enough funding. We can do better, don’t you think? Especially, when it is Jesus who is inviting us to work alongside him. And it is the Holy Spirit who wants to empower us to do so. 

So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. 10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith. (Gal. 6:9-10, NLT)

Let’s start praying for new opportunities to serve the Lord, fresh eyes to see people’s needs around us, and understanding that entertainment is not the answer to our emptiness and longing. But Jesus is. Jesus is the truth, the way, and the life. Truly. All the happiness we are seeking is to be found in Jesus. He does not let us down like entertainment does.

Jesus knows us inside out and will provide what we need. And he always gives more than he asks for. We will never be short-changed. Actually, quite the contrary. Jesus actually takes our failures, sins, and sadness and gives us love, peace, and joy. You can’t beat that deal. But you can accept it and enjoy eternally a close bond with Jesus. Just remember: all that love, peace, and joy are meant to be shared. Yet there is no need to be afraid that you will ever run out of them because refills of grace are part of the service of Jesus Christ. 

Gracious God,
We come to you to fully surrender to you. 
Forgive us for misusing our time and resources for our selfish pursuits of entertainment. 
The world does not satisfy us. But you do.
Show us what it is to really live for you. 
Use us for your glory, Lord.
Empower us for victorious living.
In Jesus’ name, we pray.


What do you think? Are you a butterfly Christian? I think we are all in danger of becoming one. It is very counter-cultural to do otherwise. But I truly believe that is the calling of every Christian. Are you with me? Blessings to you as you fight the good fight of a Christian!

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