In the spotlight, the message is crystal, every day it hits back on us in different coats and quotes. “Come out of your comfort zone”, “come out of your cell”, “come out of your shackles” … and on it goes, the call to come out: to leave the past behind, get over the guilt and start a new life. The epitome of a fresh start, a new life, the second chance parody. This write-up could be nothing different from the usual but it exemplifies the subject, a natural illustration, and comparison to make a more practical footage.
Let’s get the definition of ECDYSIS real quick: it’s basically the periodic shedding of the old skin (outer cuticle) in order to allow growth to take place. It’s a natural process in Arthropods (Insects and reptiles). At a certain point in the life of these invertebrates, they shed off or get rid-off their outer shell or skin completely in order for the new one formed inside to get access to light. Humans are the most developed organism in existence, and why would we be interested in comparing our sophisticated way of living to a simple organism? The answer can be simply revealed in the basic manual for mankind; the Bible acknowledges such comparison. In Proverbs 6: 6, “Go to the ant (insect)…, consider its ways and be wise”. It says, “consider its ways”, that’s more of a puzzle that leads to a treasure, strategic analysis, and understanding of the ant’s simple life. Thus, wisdom lies in the careful observation of the nature of ants.
The whole process can be summarized into two stages. The resting or inactivity period and the crawling or explosive period. Before ECDYSIS takes place, the insect undergoes a period of rest. This rest is not a showcase of laziness or redundancy but a period of epiphany, preparation, and inactivity. Epiphany is the point of sudden realization, a period of deep assessment of oneself. We are too busy assessing others that we have no time to assess ourselves. We are always nagging, complaining about our problems but we never make time to listen to ourselves; a therapy session with our own selves. Before you can get out of your cell, you need to identify yourself. Make time for you, know thyself and thus the stepping stone to freedom. At some point in your life, you should be able to ask yourself “what do I want?” What are my priorities? These are the very things that will keep you moving regardless of your current situation. Some of us don’t know what we want in this life. Is like a cycle, we wake up, find ourselves in the channels, then on it goes, “life goes on” we say. To some is just a necessity instead of responsibility.
How do you foot the bill (self-discipline) of something you don’t even know about? In Luke 14:28, the Bible says, “And which man set up to build a tower doesn’t first consider the cost…” To me, this is the basis of life, a life with a budget, a prototype. No matter how spiritual or intellectual you are, you need a visualization of what you want. Which tower do you want to build, then you can make an estimation of its cost.
Generally, the insect in the period of inactivity garners all that it requires for the process, it realizes what’s ahead of it, and make preparations towards it. Thus, after the point of epiphany, still, in the period of inactivity, there is the pursuit of self-investment. The insect grows internally, becomes big till the outer shell cannot contain it then it splits off. Meaning, you just don’t come out of your cell, no! You need to enrich yourself before you come out. You need to grow, mature inside, you need to get along before the green light.
Then a period of the explosion, where the insects crawl out of the shell. And this is a period of struggle, the ‘hard way’. Are you happy with your life? Do you have an addiction that’s killing you emotionally and physically? Do you want to live the dreamed good life; experience a blissful relationship with God and your family? Do you want to be that good dad or mom, then hey, you need to learn the hard way. Coming out isn’t as easy as you know. Before explosion, there is always a period of preparation (process). This period is skeptical, even though is an explosive stage, it’s not spontaneous. It takes time and dedication. There are times when we get all wild and out, after hearing those messages of “coming out”. We get triggered, we want to explode immediately, “I tried it for a week, for a month”… was helpful at the beginning, but because it was out of the blue, it suddenly ends as stories. Why didn’t it work out? Because we fail to recognize that this period is not spontaneous, it takes time to crawl out of the shell. There is dedication in hitting and stretching, a commitment and sacrifices to be made. It may take months, it may be longer than anticipated but hey, you don’t stop till you get out. The insect does not stop till it’s completely out of the shell, there are movements, increase in blood pressure, humping and bumping, and these synchronize with time.
There’s no easy way out dear, it’s all you know and have heard. Probably read books of a thousand leaf, yet the theme is the same, “the hard way” (self-discipline), but hey there’s no results if a man knoweth not himself. Know thyself first, identify what you want, get a prototype, a visualization of your own story, and then get along. Make it happen for you have what it takes to effect significant changes in your environment and even beyond.