A recent garden guest has been quiet, unassuming— not disruptive in any way. For weeks. In fact, we hardly knew she was around. But there she was! Near the entrance of the front door. Lurking, plotting to catch other visitors in her inconspicuous lethal strands.
A large female yellow orb garden spider set up residence in early summer and lived quite comfortably until mid October. She produced 2 sets of egg sacs containing thousands of little ones and faithfully guarded them. This species is considered beneficial for our gardens, so I deliberately allowed her long stay. I didn’t mind this silent intruder near the porch; her daily routines intrigued me. As long as she snared flies, mosquitoes and wasps in her enticing grid, she was welcomed. I often observed her as she quickly wrapped and prepared each victim for dinner. She munched each bite with deliberate detail; she relished each insect.
But when I discovered she had lured one of my butterflies in her subtle web, I was furious. No, no! You can’t have that one.
Not my butterflies! I wanted to post a sign at the butterfly bush warning of impending danger.
My last post three months ago expressed the freedom and beauty learned in the struggle of the butterfly. Shortly after, I found myself caught in such a web stronger than this spider’s web. The strands made by spiders are five times stronger than piano wire. By weight, they are stronger than steel.
We are often blind to the web right near our own front door! The tentacles that began to grasp me— quietly, unsuspectingly, even easily, were more cunning than those of our garden guest. And stronger!
I wanted to run for little scissors and cut the butterfly loose that evening. That would be impossible. Tom said it was already dead because all life was squeezed from it immediately as venom was secreted when the binding process began.
Traps are baited for us at every turn, every day. Fear, doubt, distrust, pain, pride, busyness, lust, negative words and thoughts–oh, the list is endless and different for each one. How quickly we can be charmed into an unsuspecting web. Our GPS failed to warn of impending dangers.
The analogy of the spider’s web and our webs stops here. As impossible as it is for an insect to free itself from the invisible web, it is possible for you and me to be set free.
“In my anguish I cried to the Lord, and he answered by setting me free.” Psalm 118:5. There is a process in binding one up, slowly, slowly when we are “caught”, and there is a process in being set free. Much is involved in being set free, yes. Beginning the journey of release from being the prey to freedom takes prayer and action.
“My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare.” Psalm 25:15
A broken heart in a family situation, coupled with fear crippled me these weeks. Added to this or perhaps because of— a physical condition due to my Lyme history caused my auto immune system to crash. Too many sticky silken threads, and I was caught . . .
I love these words from Ginny Owens, a beautiful Christian music writer and singer:
We meet God in our suffering and either learn to trust Him or turn our hearts away from Him. As I cried out to God with fear and uncertainty, He gave me more of Himself. I didn’t need to have the answers anymore.
Listen to her song, “I’ll Walk through the valley if you want me to https://youtu.be/aaXxwFpavj4
Perhaps you are currently caught in a web, held hostage, wrapped tightly. I do not allow Satan credit for orchestrating the sticky strands of mistakes, choices, habits or even a physical issue, to entrap me —or you. But he does delight when a believer is caught and is unable to live in joy and confidence. He pulls the dangerous, delicate threads tighter, and often, we see no way out.
It is then we must discover a new GPS– Grace’s Present Sanctuary. “God has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. I will not, I will not, I will not in any degree leave you helpless (no matter the strong web you find yourself–my words here in italics 🙂 nor forsake nor let you down. I will not relax my hold on you–surely not!” Hebrews 13: 5b, Amplified. I love, love, love that verse in this translation!
If you are currently ‘caught’, please reply. I am a bit experienced in untangling the threads.
Becoming free . . .