Panting for breath. Exhausted. In fear of his life. A man ran from his persecutors. They were gaining on him. He couldn’t run anymore and saw a cave. He ran into it and fell down, desperately pleading for God to help him.
The persecutors stopped at the cave opening and he held his breath. Then one said, “He can’t have gone in here. There’s a spider web over it yet.”
God directed a spider to quickly weave a web, and the man was safe.
I read this story many years ago, and it stuck with me. As I surfed the web for it, I found different versions of it. So whether it’s truth or legend, I don’t know.
What I do know is that with God anything is possible. He can protect us in whichever way He chooses. Even weak little creatures are in His hands. Even a spider web can become a wall of protection.
But what about the times when God doesn’t put up a wall to protect His beloved? Does that mean He doesn’t hear our desperate cries? Does that mean He doesn’t care about our plight?
These questions and others have haunted me at times. Why does God protect some from harm and not others? Why does He allow evil to hurt the weak? Abuse of power to hurt the vulnerable?
When I get myself into such a quandary of questions, I spin my wheels and go nowhere. I make myself dizzy as I go round and round analyzing situations this way and that way. Sometimes my wanting to know the why of everything that happens makes my head spin.
The only way I can calm down is to focus on God’s truth and His character of love and faithfulness.
Life doesn’t always go the way we want it to or the way we expect it to. Longings are unmet. Seeking God doesn’t always mean we “feel” His presence. Cries for relief or refuge sometimes seem to go unanswered.
Here are some of the truths that have given me hope, and I pray they will do the same for you:
♥ God is God. We are not. We don’t need to make sense out of everything. Someday we will fully understand the bigger picture of all this.
Jesus replied, “You don’t understand now
what I am doing, but someday you will.”
John 13:7 NLT
♥ The events and circumstances that perplex us can lead us into a deeper faith in God. They help us to rely more heavily on God and His promises. They refine us to be more like Jesus.
“But He knows the way that I take
[and He pays attention to it].
When He has tried me, I will come forth
as [refined] gold [pure and luminous].
Job 23:10 AMP
♥ Bad things happen when people who are given choices choose evil. That doesn’t mean God doesn’t love us or doesn’t care. No evil will separate us from His love.
“No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory
is ours through Christ, who loved us.
And I am convinced that nothing
can ever separate us from God’s love.
Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,
neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—
not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.
No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed,
nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from
the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
♥ God has the power to protect us from evil, but sometimes He chooses to allow us to break, so we can be led deeper into the brokenness He suffered for us. The more we connect with His brokenness, the more He can use our brokenness to help others who are broken.
“As for you, you meant evil against me,
but God meant it for good,
to bring it about that many people
should be kept alive, as they are today.”
♥ No matter what happens, God’s plans and thoughts are for our good, not for evil. He gives us a future and a hope in Him.
“For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,’
says the Lord, ‘plans for peace and well-being and not
for disaster to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 29:11 AMP
♥ The sufferings we go through here are nothing compared to the glory hereafter.
“For I consider [from the standpoint of faith]
that the sufferings of the present life
are not worthy to be compared with the glory
that is about to be revealed to us and in us!”
Romans 8:18 AMP
God protected the man in the cave with a spider web. Nothing is impossible with God. But sometimes our cries for help aren’t always answered in the way we want them to.
Do you ever get yourself in a quandary of questions? Which truth here helps you calm down? What are some other truths about God, His love, and His faithful character that help you to trust Him?
“God Is God”
by Steven Curtis Chapman
“And the pain falls like a curtain
On the things I once called certain
And I have to say the words I fear the most
I just don’t know
And the questions without answers
Come and paralyze the dancer
So I stand here on the stage afraid to move…”