Spiders and Square Inches

Okay, this is going to seem a little strange. You don’t have to read any farther or you can just stop at anytime, if you feel a little squeamish. Your choice. Here goes…

This summer, there was a two week span when… 

Wait, first… You know when, at your house, you might look up and notice spider webs! Yes, sometimes you see those hanging, silky strings laden with dust and stuff that have become visible in the sunlight. Ugh! Grab the dust mop! Knock those things down! Get rid of them – BEFORE the cleaning lady comes!  There’s no cleaning lady at my house, but nonetheless, they have to get gone!

So, anyway, there was this two week span when I noticed a spider web… 

Now, I have nothing against spiders.  Granted, I’m not a big fan of bugs, spiders or other creeping things crawling on me.  They have their place, I have mine. However, there’s no arachnophobia here. Most, if not all, the spiders I’ve encountered are smaller than a quarter.  I’ve never been bitten, and in my youth, I’ve been known to step on a few. I’m way bigger! No fear!

Now, I noticed a spider web, not up in the corner by the ceiling, but down in the corner where the floor meets the wall, next to the toilet.  Not only did I notice a web, but in it there lived the occupant of the web, no bigger than an eraser on a pencil. It was just sitting there where the floor meets the wall, yes, next to the toilet, of all places.  Strange place, you might say. True, but what does a spider know about location, location, location?


So, at that point, not quite ready to get the dust mop, I let the beast be.  I wondered about it’s little square inch or two of ecosystem there on my bathroom floor.  How does it survive in such limited space? What food comes it’s way and gets caught in the web?   What kind of spider? Carnivore, herbivore, bothivore? Life span? Hmmm…? Interestingly, when I came back later the thing was still there.  For about two weeks it just hung around in the same spot. I watched and wondered. Then, it was gone!

The mystery to me isn’t where did the little spider go?  But, rather, how do tiny critters like that survive in the web of life in which they find themselves?  What purpose does that small creature have in the grand scheme of God’s creation?

Oh!  Let me tell you about this.  This summer, for about a two week stretch, I noticed a flower, occupying its square inch of the crack next to the foundation of my house…


Hmmmm…. I guess there are a lot of things occupying square inches about which I can watch and wonder. I’ll keep my eyes open.  I’ll try to remember the One to whom all of our square inches belong.

Abraham Kuyper,  a Dutch theologian, had something to say about square inches and such, although, I don’t  think he had spiders on his mind. He said, There is not a square inch in the whole’ domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!”

So there you have it, something to think about… spiders and pansies and square inches … and …  the One to whom it all belongs… today’s gift.

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