Of Spiders and Influence

In a time of year where most of the real spiders may or may not have been killed by a cold snap, I am seeing them in decorations a lot. They remind me of a conversation I had with one of my girls recently. She had told me not long after we first met, that she had a major fear of spiders and couldn’t even get close enough to kill them. I said something about the fact I don’t mind them as long as they aren’t bothering me and I think the fuzzy little jumping spiders are kind of cute. She told me spiders were scary in all forms, no matter the size, and couldn’t be cute. We left it at that.

I spent some time thinking how I could help her over her fear. God didn’t give us a spirit of fear 2Ti 1:7. The phrase ‘fear not’ is used in the Bible 62 times from Genesis to Revelations. I don’t see any benefit in loosing your mind every time you see something with eight legs. I set aside a couple of ideas I thought might work, but hadn’t actually done anything with them yet.

Back to the influence part. We were working in my storage building the other day. I moved a box and made a flippant remark about the tiny spider that ran to hide somewhere safer. To my great surprise, instead of telling me to kill it, saying something about being afraid of spiders, or wanting to leave the building, she said she didn’t mind the small ones, the fuzzy ones with the little white spots could be kind of cute, but she preferred to squish the larger ones.

I was shocked. I almost couldn’t believe this was the same girl that couldn’t pick up a bucket because there was a spider on the rim that could fit, legs and all, under a pencil eraser  I agreed with her and the conversation flowed on to other things.

I know how much influence one or two comments made by people I respect are still making in my life. I am in horses today because one of my mentors said “You have a lot of patience. You would make a good horse trainer.” I suspect she doesn’t remember it at all, but I do fifteen years later.

I sometimes forget that I have that kind of power to influence these girls for the rest of their lives when I don’t see homework for a couple of weeks in a row or when I don’t see the changes I want to see in the time frame I had in mind. God gave me a glimpse of the influence I have with my words to change a philosophy for life. I am honored and awed.


My ornaments and the support for my horses are at GallopingGlass.com.

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