September 28, 2014

Tarantulas: Those Scary Creeping Things




SCRIPTURE: Genesis 6:7   So the Lord said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and the fowls of the air, for it repenteth me that I have made them.”  (KJV)

REFLECTION:     Many people would be happy if somehow the creepy, creeping tarantulas were destroyed, removed from the earth. But some people set out to save sick ones.

The June 5, 1999 AP headline captured my attention: Sick tarantula getting top-notch care.

2 ½ ounce Goliath, No. 79011, had an infection oozing from her side and an abscess the size of a quarter. The infection gave the salad-plate sized eight-legged critter value. She could teach doctors about medical care of tarantulas in captivity.

The antibiotic wasn’t working. Veterinarians planned CAT scans to identify problems during surgery that hopefully would correct Goliath’s problem.

Goliath, with her dark brown hair and turret of eyes atop her flat head, able to make a fearless person arachnophobic, must be a special spider. Such great lengths to save a creature that has “a habit of showing her fangs and shooting barbed hairs from her rump” doesn’t seem like something I might consider.

One of my pre-married era boyfriends would think differently. Stanley, my senior prom date, attended a different high school than I did because he lived across town. None of that had anything to do with his hobby and scientific “research:” raising tarantulas.

Could the fact that he kept his pets in the basement of his parent’s corner store indicate some deep-seated hostility? (OK, I’ll put away the analysis for now! But he did tell me about times the store closed because

one of his creatures escaped!)

Once I dared to view his “collection.” I looked but didn’t touch. What he played with fondly I found intimidating.

Since then I’ve only seen the critters at zoos behind glass windows.

Tarantulas are among God’s creatures. Perhaps Stanley appreciated God’s creations more than I did. Back then, I never thought to ask him.

He presented a talk based on his tarantulas at a science fair. I won a bigger prize with my inept cancer talk. I don’t know why—he knew his material. Mine was Greek to me.

I wonder about Stanley today. I only heard from him once since I married Monte. I do hope he has discovered as much joy from God being in his life as he did in those tarantulas that were God’s critters.


PRAYER: God, let us humans find value in all the creatures you have created, including the repulsive ones. That you have created them means they have some intrinsic values. Amen



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