In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 1 Peter 1:6-7
I learned something interesting the other day. Did you know that male peacock feathers would be plain brown if it were not for something called structural coloration? The brilliant blue, turquoise and green colors that stop us in our tracks when we see a male peacock display his tail feathers are produced when multilayer nanostructures in the feathers scatter light waves and cause them to interfere with each other, amplifying or attenuating the incidental light to produce color. This organized light scattering also is the reason that the colors in the feathers change when you look at them from different angles. The brilliant blue color of the wings of the Morpho butterfly and the African marble berry are other examples of structural coloration in the Creation.
Scientists have been studying peacock feathers and butterfly wings with scanning electron microscopy to try and understand how this process works so that they can develop artificial materials that won’t lose their color or ever need to be painted. For example, beetle fossils have been discovered that are still almost as colorful today as they were when they were crawling on the earth due to God’s incredible design of structural coloration.
As I have been thinking about peacock feathers and marble berries, it occurred to me that structural coloration is a lot like a maturing faith in Christ. Jesus said that the person who listens to His words and puts them into practice is like a wise builder builds his or her life on a foundation of rock (Matthew 7:24-27). When the storms of life come, and they will come, the one who has built their lives on the foundation of Christ will persevere and not be washed away. Just like the peacock feather, people who build their lives on the foundation of Christ take on a sort of “spiritual coloration” as their faith helps them endure the storms of life. They become beautiful and bring glory to God as the “color” of their lives transforms from ordinary to extraordinary through their structure in Christ.
Dear Lord, help us to not just listen to your Word but to put it into practice like wise builders. We are amazed by the beauty of your Creation and want to bring glory to your name. Please fill us with your Holy Spirit so that we will take on “spiritual coloration” that is beautiful and that will last.