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Monday, May 23, 2011

Lessons from a Spider

Good morning!

I am so happy that you have decided to join me here today, dear friend.Whoops! That would have been a big mistake! I just left out the "r" in friend. That would have read, "dear fiend." How funny, I'm glad we can laugh together first thing.

Welcome. I have some special thoughts to share with you today about how very special and important we are to our Father God.

Early Sunday morning I slipped out onto my back porch for a few minutes of quiet time before I had to get ready for church. A faint breeze tinkled the windchimes hanging there. Turning to watch their gentle movement, I noticed the most delicate of spider webs intricately woven down the center string going all the way to the daisy wind catcher hanging below. The web carefully laced the edges of each petal. It was exquisite!

 I was amazed at its perfection and was soon taken up with thoughts of the creative, little spider who had spun it. Oh, how I would love to meet this special spider who dared to vary the usual web pattern and follow the shape of a daisy. I pictured her like E.B.White's Charlotte, thinking clever thoughts while spinning a work of art to deliver a special message just for me.

Yes, Lord, I would love to meet this dear spider, I thought.

Sitting down at the table, I opened my devotion book and read the scripture verse. Contemplating its meaning, I looked up from my book listening to the birds joyfully singing their morning songs. It was a pleasant morning indeed.

Suddenly, my eyes focused on something on the chair across from me. What was that? As I leaned closer I saw that it was a spider, the spikey-looking, jumpy kind. It was sitting there perfectly still taking me in with all eight of its tiny eyes. Now, I'm not in the least bit arachnophobic, but it did  have the look of one that shouldn't be on the porch.

 Sooo, I quickly got the "bug box" that our family has used for years to relocate probably thousands of insects and the occasional mouse. I expertly scooped it up and clamped the lid on for transport to the deck outside. At once, out in the bright sunshine I lifted the lid and dumped it onto the rail of the deck and watched as it instantly lowered itself, suspended by an almost invisible thread.

As soon as my foot landed inside the porch, it hit me. I quickly turned back to find the spider, but it had already disappeared. Only moments before I had been all wrapped up in the wonder of an unknown spider who spun such a unique web. My words echoed back to me, I would love to meet that spider."

As I lowered myself into the chair, I felt sad at an opportunity lost. It had  to be the same spider. What were the chances that seconds after I had whispered a desire to see a certain spider one would appear directly in my line of vision. God had heard and answered, what was not exactly a prayer but a small desire to marvel at one of His creatures.

He knew my thoughts from afar as it says in the Bible in Psalm 139 vs 2.

He had listened, as He always does.

He cared, as only He can.

He answered, as only He could.

My smallest thoughts were important to Him. Important enough for Him to provide the answer. What had gone wrong?  Why didn't I recognize His answer?

Quite simply, I didn't recognize the answer that was literally staring me in the face because it was not what I expected or maybe what I wanted to see.
I had pictured a plump, little innocent-looking spider and what I saw instead was a creepy, scary-looking one. Therefore, I rejected it.

Then, there's the possibility that I wasn't looking for an answer, because I underestimated how much I mean to Him. I didn't realize that a request so small and seemingly unimportant could evoke a response from the Almighty.

There are other times when I'm sure I overlook God's answers; hence His blessings because I am fearful or don't like being drawn out of my comfort zone.

How about you? Do you sometimes pray but don't really expect an answer.

Do you sometimes feel that your request is too small, too unimportant to bother the Almighty Father God, Creator of the Universe?

Sometimes do you pray, but put conditions on the answer because you are fearful of what might be required of you?

Well, welcome to the frailty of the human race, dear one. We all sometimes pray unbelieving, feeling unworthy of His attention, feeling afraid of failing.

But, guess what? Rejoice with me! God has the perfect answers to all of those doubts and He shared them with me this morning in the unlikely form of a small gray spider.
Praise Him! Halleleujah!

Pray expecting Him to answer. Look for it. Believe.

You are of the upmost importance to Him.
(After all, He did send His precious Son, Jesus to die in your place so that you could spend eternity with Him.)

And last, if He trusts you with an answer to a prayer, He will provide the strength and ablity to follow through...whatever it is.

So go now. Enjoy your day. Look for God's answers to prayers all around you.
He really does hear and answer prayer in the most unique ways. He meets us right where we are.

Thank you most gracious Lord, my Father.

(c) 2011 Bonnie M. Evans

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