We consider those we love
geographically spread out
around our community, our country and our world.
We imagine the ties that bind,
running from them to us—us to them—
like gossamer threads—
almost invisible, but so very strong—
ties of love and respect and prayer.
Then, because we take You seriously
(Your love of all and Your expectations of us),
we try and imagine similar threads binding us to all others—
to those we don’t know.
And it’s harder to imagine being bound to them—
to those we don’t know—
hard to imagine loving and respecting them—
praying for them—
especially when we read what some of them say on Facebook.
So we stop
thinking about ties that bind us to everyone
and wonder if we should instead imagine threads
running from each person up to You—
because You’re connected to everyone,
and we could thus picture everyone as anchored to You …
though not everyone believes in You.
So maybe we don’t imagine
You suspended somewhere at a point up above
and all of us hanging from You by our threads
and go back to the image of all of us connected to each other
(the one we found so hard to imagine),
but, this time, we imagine You (not above),
but in the midst of all those threads—
You as the loving spider who spun the web and knit us all together—
aware of every movement in, through, and on the threads—
responsive to every movement in, through, and on the threads …
and let’s just stop the arachnid imagining right there!
It’s somewhat of a weird image, we think—
never really having pictured You as Spider God before.
But, as we have to do with all images of You,
we take the insight/s offered,
and reject what obviously doesn’t fit.
And there’s something to the image of us
connected to everyone else
not by virtue of our affections
or any great discipline
emerging from our understanding of Your expectations,
but rather because of Your work.
And I don’t know about you,
but when I brush by some bushes, or a low hanging tree,
and run into a spider’s gossamer threads
and know myself within ties that bind,
I start—back up—flailing my hands—
trying to brush off every single last one of those threads—
and I do, I admit, brush off Your love and respect and grace
that bind me to all others—
bind me to every facet of Your creation.
Okay, so where are we going with this?
Always and only back to Your love, our God—
Your love for all creation,
Your work that continues to bind all together,
in spite of the resistance within that all,
in the hope of redemption—
and the possibility of being a part of that work.
So as often as we brush You off,
spin us back in
and love and grace
and Your work—
Your marvelous transcendent interweaving
of every last detail.