The winds of adversity sometimes blow hard enough to rock our foundations. But it’s during the hard times that God works in our lives to bring spiritual maturity and strength. The first chapter of James says we can count it joy whenever we face trials of many kinds. When we remain joyful in the Lord through our problems, God teaches us patience and perseverance—important parts of our Christian character. Be joyful!
ETERNAL PERSPECTIVES by Sally Bair
Threads of unity
Spider webs are one of nature’s wonders. The common orb spiders, for instance, begin building their webs with long strands attached to an object. The first strand is crucial in strengthening the ones that follow. They become the web’s foundation, upon which they weave many short, concentric strands from the center outward. The closer to the center, the tighter the strands become. Often, a spider web ends up being perfectly symmetrical, beautiful to behold.
Spider webs are vulnerable to wind and weather as well as to the accidental damage inflicted by bigger creatures, humans included. Spiders regularly spend time repairing their webs, strengthening them in the process.
We could compare our lives to that of a spider’s web. We build upon a foundation, weaving strands of life from one “post” to another. Our posts may vary. They might include family, job, health, hobbies, and God.
For some of us, God comes first, family second, and job last. Others mix that order to suit their situation or time of life. “My health comes first,” some say, adding, “I have to take care of myself.” While some put their spouses above everyone else, others say, “My children come first in my life.” Still others put job ahead of everything, perhaps without realizing it.
In many homes, the God-strand stands alone, like an add-on part of the package. In such cases, we may consider church attendance, perhaps a two-minute, morning devotional, and maybe even a monthly Bible study, as enough to help us through life’s problems.
How can we think of God as an add-on when we consider His great and sacrificial love for us? Imagine how strong our web of life would be if He were the very foundation and all our other life-strands dependent on Him. Our constant thanks and praise alone bring blessings to our families, jobs, and spouses.
Scientists have learned that spider web silk (called glue) rivals steel in its strength. We could call God’s Word and Spirit the glue that not only holds our spiritual life together, but gives us the strength we need daily to live according to His plan, which is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment.” (Matthew 22:37)
“Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you,” Jesus tells us. (Matthew 6:33)
Lord, cause Your Word to be the foundation that strengthens our walk with You. In Jesus’ name, amen.