And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. [Romans 8:28 (NLT)]
It rained last night. During our early morning walk, we looked out over the prairie and saw hundreds of sparkling spider webs. As the morning sun caught the water droplets on the silk, the master weavers’ work glistened in the mist. Although we take that trail several times a week, it was the first time this season we saw those arachnidan works of art. The spiders didn’t start spinning just the previous night; their webs have been there all summer but weather and light conditions kept us from seeing them. In fact, had we chosen to walk the loop in the other direction, we never would have seen them at all!
God, like his eight legged creations, is always busy weaving the strands of our lives. Much of the time, however, as with the spider webs, we don’t see or understand what He’s doing. “Where is God in all of this?” we ask. It is usually in hindsight that we recognize His presence—the way He moved, guided, protected, instructed, disciplined or provided for us. Nevertheless, whether or not we see His hand in our circumstances, we know that He, like the spiders, is ever-present and busy weaving.
I find those beautiful webs reassuring. They show me that God will give us beautiful gifts when we least expect them but that we must be willing to look for them in the most unlikely places. The webs remind me that we don’t need to see God to know that He is always there and always working. Moreover, God reveals himself in a variety of ways. While an angel or burning bush is dramatic and impressive, let’s remember that Elijah did not find God in the mighty wind, earthquake or fire. He found God in a gentle whisper. As for me, spiders’ webs on a misty morning are one of the ways God reassures me of His presence and His amazing plan; they are God’s gentle whisper of reassurance from the Master Weaver!
Our lives are but fine weavings
That God and we prepare
Each life becomes a fabric planned
And fashioned in His care.
We may not always see just how
The weavings intertwine,
But we must trust the Master’s hand
And follow His design,
For He can view the pattern
Upon the upper side,
While we must look from underneath
And trust in Him to guide.
Sometimes a strand of sorrow
Is added to His plan,
And though it is difficult for us,
We still must understand
That it is He who fills the shuttle,
It is He who knows what is best,
So we must weave in patience
And leave to Him the rest.
Not till the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly
Shall God unroll the canvas
And explain the reason why
The dark threads are as needed
In the Weaver’s skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned. [Author unknown]