Metamorphosis Through Isolation
Progressions of Fasting – Part 3
If you recall in our first installment, we talked about pairing fasting with prayer using the example of what happens to a caterpillar changing into a butterfly. Basically the lifecycle of a butterfly. To take you back, in the last episode we prepared the cocoon, your cocoon, for this time of fasting. Now we are ready to progress to step 2. Progression #2 is to get inside of the cocoon. This is how we isolated ourselves. Following the history of Noah after he built the ark, he entered inside to be protected from the flood. I have a question for you: what do you think was happening inside of the ark when the rains began to flood the earth? Think about it, inside the ark he only had his family, only the things that he prepared and placed in the ark and himself. When you are fasting, you must get inside, you must seal your cocoon, and you must close off the rest of the world. Think about what that’s like. Think about how it feels. Your space is limited. What you have at your disposal has been reduced. What you can and cannot do has been predetermined. That’s what it is like to go into a time of fasting.
You have to set yourself up to be like Noah inside that ark. That’s what a cocoon experience is like. It forces you to change your habits and make time for God, which is the purpose for prayer paired with fasting. You are preparing yourself to do what ordinary people won’t do. You intentionally isolate yourself so that you can spend more time focused on the things that are going to transform your life. In this case, you are transforming or experiencing a metamorphosis.
Close Out The Outside Noise
The cocoon closes us off from the news, from the noise, and from the social media updates. It even closes us off from the foods we don’t need and would normally consume easily and readily. In the cocoon, we can’t know about the wars, the deaths, the politics, and the things going on because we’ve isolated ourselves. Outside the cocoon, outside the ark, there were a lot of things going on that you never noticed, because it had become normal. There was a lot of noise outside the ark.
When God sealed that ark on Noah, the flood was not yet carrying the boat away. It was only heavy rain at first. People might have been laughing and thinking this doesn’t make sense what Noah was doing. Nothing really was happening destructively.
Most people will look at you and say nothing is going to happen to you. They will say nothing is going to change about you. They will make fun or discredit what you are doing. The point of being in the cocoon is so that you can’t hear the outside noise. Don’t allow the outside noises to tell you what you can’t become, how you can’t grow, how your life can’t change, how you can’t get through your situations, how you can’t place your marriage back on the right track, or how you can’t connect with your children. Don’t allow the things around you to penetrate your cocoon. You have an ability to close yourself off from all that noise so that you can start transforming.
Closing out the outside will transform what you’ve been saying to yourself. The Scripture says it this way. “As a man thinketh in his heart so is he.”  Being in a cocoon helps you change and identify what’s in your heart, so that you can change your heart and become something new.
Allow the Inside of the Cocoon to Change You
What do you think was going on outside that boat? When people are outside the boat represents those who are not participating in this prayer paired with fasting exercise. They rather are subjected to the environment and circumstances around you. In fact, outside the boat, they are getting wet, rained on. Outside the boat is uncontrollable water, uncontrollable noise, and an uncontrollable environment. It’s flooding around them. While they are trying to keep the water out, it’s penetrating, and seeping through for those outside the ark. The waters are steadily rising until it finally engulfs them. That is what the noise of life does to us. It’s steady rising upon us until it engulfs us. It takes prayer paired with fasting to protect us from the flood of noise that life brings upon us.
What’s going on outside your boat? You see, fasting puts us away from all that chaos and the things that are filling up our space. It puts us away from the things that fill our minds, contaminate our hearts, and pollute our soul. Therefore we get in the boat, we get into our cocoon, that’s what happens to that caterpillar. He gets into the cocoon so that he can change. You are going to get into your cocoon of fasting paired with prayer so that you can change.
Back to Noah, around him things were dying, people were around him dying, they were crying and calling out. God made sure that there was nothing Noah could really do about it. He was isolated in the ark. We must isolate ourselves in our cocoon.
Lose Your Attachments While in the Cocoon
There are things that happen in our world that we really can’t do anything about. Therefore, we isolate ourselves from that so that we are not subjected to the same circumstances and the same calamities that everyone else has that they can’t do anything about. We get into a time of fasting paired with prayer so that we can figure out our own way. We get with God so that we can do something about it.
You see, before he got into the boat, Noah like everyone else was attached to the things around him. You may have too many attachments that might be holding you back from becoming more. Could it be that you are attached to your neighborhood, attached to your job, attached to smoking, attached to drinking, attached to eating too much, possibly attached to something you shouldn’t be watching, viewing, or listening to? Get into your cocoon and isolate yourself so that the attachments won’t pull away. When you do, you will start to see things differently. That’s what getting in the cocoon looks like.
I thank God there were no windows in the ark. Sometimes you need to not be able to see. Sometimes you need to close your eyes so that you can only see what God wants you to see. That’s what happened to Noah. He could have been focused on the devastation. He could have been focused on the flood. But instead, he could only focus on what was in the cocoon. That’s what I like about the caterpillar transforming into a butterfly; the only thing that caterpillar can view while in the cocoon is the inside of that cocoon. He doesn’t know what’s going on around him or outside of it.
This momentary isolation is designed so that you can get to a point where you can transition, experience a metamorphism. You are going to come out something different. In that ark, Noah was closed off from the rest of the world. In your cocoon, you are going to be closed off from the rest of your world. As you’re praying and fasting, all you are doing is closing yourself off from the rest of the world. You gotta like that! This is next level prayer!
In progression #2, you isolate to your cocoon. A caterpillar forms its cocoon and isolates itself. A person who pairs prayer with fasting, builds a cocoon to isolate him or herself. This cocoon is a tight space, meaning there’s not a lot that can go on in there. It is minimalistic so that you don’t have a lot that you can deal with. It’s meant to be that way so that there are no distractions. In other words, the caterpillar has freed himself from any distractions, attachments, and any other outside influences. That’s what we’re doing when we fast and pray. We detached from any distractions, attachments, and other outside influences.
Now that the caterpillar is in a place where it is isolated and protected, it can inhabit the cocoon for the length of time needed for one purpose and one purpose only, to transform. You are going to get in the cocoon so that it gives you enough time, an isolated place, so that you can transform. If you do it right, they can’t find you to interrupt the transformation process. If you get yourself in a right position and get inside the cocoon, don’t worry they can’t find you until you come out. This cocoon stage is similar to how a person participates in the exercise of fasting. Once that cocoon is sealed, change immediately starts to happen. It is like a mother, who is pregnant with her baby. That baby has to stay in the womb until just the right time. The child is developing. In the cocoon-stage is when you begin to develop. You are in a developmental stage. That’s what the cocoon is for. That’s what it means to go through progression two of prayer paired with fasting.
Question: How can you set yourself up for a successful transformation while inside your cocoon?