I write about what you---
women, wives and moms---
about your family, faith and future.
I write about what's hard, what helps and what heals.
I show you how it's done. And not done.
I hold your hand as you find what matters to the Savior.
And let go of those things that mattered to you, but not to Him.
I write about what Him.
               Sonya Contreras

And the Two Shall Be One

(Note: This worm is not a monarch butterfly worm, but a tomato worm.)

God made marriage to fulfill a craving in our souls for someone else to share our values, dreams, and desires. It’s a “oneness” that helps us be whole.
That “oneness” is elusive when we grab, demand, and control.
It’s like the butterfly. We want to fly, soar, and see the world.
But we are but a worm that can only lift its eyes and see the next leaf.
The worm hatches from an egg placed strategically where its food is.
It has no dreams, only lunch, then dinner and the next meal.
Much like motherhood—that making of many meals. Didn’t we pick up this sock already? Wasn’t this floor dirty yesterday? Like an endless treadmill that counts our steps but gets us nowhere. We find no value in this endless making of meals and cleaning— We long for more but are too tired for anything else.
We eat the next leaf.

But something tells us to wait. Something better is coming.
The worm spins its cocoon and stays still and quiet.
We feel claustrophobic and afraid in the dark cocoon’s tight covering.
Isn’t it choking us?
We fight against the cocoon, thinking we know better.
The cocoon restricts us, keeps us from doing what we want.
When we control our husbands, we fight against God.
We leave the safety of the cocoon before we should. Don’t we deserve freedom?
But we find the freedom we sought, wasn’t what we thought.
We are vulnerable. Exposed to the world. Unable to stand.
The butterfly wasn’t ready.
The undeveloped butterfly dies rather than flies.
It didn’t wait. 

But when we wait,
Our struggle is not to control but to submit.
The cocoon is meant to protect and shelter.
We submit to waiting.
We submit to internal change.
We submit by dying to self. That means our dreams, wishes, and needs.
We think no longer of who we are. Weren’t we just a worm?
We find the servant’s heart of Christ is being made in us.
We don’t need to find our own worth, when we see the Savior and Who He is.

As we submit to God’s order and to our husbands leading, we change from that ugly, selfish worm that couldn’t do more than eat—to a butterfly whose wings are now strong enough to fight out of the cocoon.

Our waiting is over. We must escape from the cocoon that's now our prison.
The struggle is intense. The cocoon’s hardened case is tough.
Now the cocoon has a different purpose.
As the butterfly struggles to break out of the cocoon, its wings grow strong in its escape.
We dry our wings in the sunshine.
We’re no longer that ugly worm that knows only its own wants.
We’ve learned to know another. His dreams. His wants. His desire.

We lift our wings to fly.
We are startled that we direct only one set of wings. The other set is controlled by our husband. We beat our wings together, unified, with that oneness that lets us soar.
You see, when we escaped the cocoon, we didn’t get that freedom we craved as a worm—that selfish,
me-only thinking.
But we are changed to have the wholeness that comes from doing what we were made to do—be the helpmeet for our husbands.
The soaring comes, not because we do what we want, but because we do what we must with the one God has brought us.
That oneness with our husband that our soul craves comes 
   from giving not taking, 
   of following not strutting ahead, 
   of encouraging not berating, 
   of walking beside our man not dragging him by the ear to our own dreams.
It’s a oneness more beautiful than any butterfly.

We aren’t in heaven yet, so we still have some rough winds that may threaten to break our wings, but we are closer to that “wholeness” that God wanted for each couple since the Garden of Eden.
After all, it was by His Design that we stay in that cocoon and submit to our husbands until the right time, when God unites us as one.
Isn’t that what He meant when He said, “The two shall be one flesh”? 

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Author of Biblical fiction, married to my best friend, and challenged by eight sons’ growing pains as I write about what matters.

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