John has been re-reading Charlotte’s Web and has taken to reading it aloud to Baby #3 lately. We have obviously always loved the book and decorated Charlotte’s nursery with a Charlotte’s Web theme when she was born. Charlotte, the spider, is a loyal friend- brave, intelligent, and selfless. It wasn’t until John started reading the book again to our littlest rainbow that I realized how special Wilbur is too.
Wilbur the pig is the runt of the litter. The farmer’s daughter, Fern, saves him from being killed because he is “small and weak” and “will never amount to anything”. With some mothering love, Fern nurses him into being a strong, healthy pig who then has to worry about becoming the Christmas ham for his new family. You can’t help but fall in love with Wilbur. He is innocent, sweet, polite, and cheerful. He loves unconditionally. The author mentions numerous times how Fern, and his new friend, Charlotte, look upon him with utmost affection.
You probably know how the story goes… Charlotte begins writing words in her web as a way to show Wilbur’s humans that he is an extraordinary pig, one worth saving. When John read the following quote the other night, I couldn’t help but make connections to our own lives right now:
“Have you heard about the words that appeared in the spider’s web?” asked Mrs. Arable nervously.
“Yes,” replied the doctor.[..]
“Do you understand how there could be any writing in a spider’s web?”
“Oh, no,” said Dr. Dorian. “I don’t understand it. But for that matter I don’t understand how a spider learned to spin a web in the first place. When the words appeared, everyone said they were a miracle. But nobody pointed out that the web itself is a miracle.”
“What’s miraculous about a spider’s web?” said Mrs. Arable. “I don’t see why you say a web is a miracle- it’s just a web.”
“Ever try to spin one?” asked Dr. Dorian.
Mrs. Arable shifted uneasily in her chair. “No,” she replied. “But I can crochet a doily and I can knit a sock.”
“Sure,” said the doctor. “But somebody taught you, didn’t they?”
“My mother taught me.”
“Well, who taught a spider? A young spider knows how to spin a web without any instructions from anybody. Don’t you regard that as a miracle?”
“I suppose so,” said Mrs. Arable. “I never looked at it that way before. Still, I don’t understand how those words got into the web. I don’t understand it, and I don’t like what I can’t understand.”
“None of us do,” said Dr. Dorian, sighing. “I’m a doctor. Doctors are supposed to understand everything. But I don’t understand everything, and I don’t intend to let it worry me.“
Sometimes you don’t realize how miraculous the smallest, ordinary things are around you until something big happens. I’ve been praying for a miracle -that we will hear at our next appointment that everything is just fine- but I’ve missed the miracle right in front of me. Baby #3, our runt, our Wilbur. She is a miracle already. So is Charlotte. So is everything else that is gloriously ordinary in our lives. We don’t really like hearing worrisome news at doctor’s appointments and we like it even less that we can’t understand it. But I’m going to do my best to stop trying to understand it, and I’m trying to not let it worry me.
Today at church, our pastor talked about Mary and how she was struck with fear when the angel told her that she would become Jesus’ mother in Luke 1: 26-38. Despite this fear, the implications her pregnancy would have, and the multitude of questions she must have had running through her mind, she gave herself over to God completely and allowed herself to be his servant. What a gift she gave to God and what a gift He gave to her and to the world! She did not understand. She didn’t know what to expect. But she trusted God and found peace in that. And look at where that trust led.
After watching the lighting of the candles on the advent wreath- faith, hope, love, and joy- and listening to these words, I felt strengthened and peaceful. Like Dr. Dorian mentioned in Charlotte’s Web, I don’t know everything but it gives me great peace that I don’t have to. It’s in God’s hands.
Thank you so much for praying for our “Wilbur” ;-) We have been so comforted by your messages of support. We are so lucky and so blessed. I hope you all have a wonderfully, amazing Christmas. We’ll keep you posted on how things are going after our next appointment!
Leaving you with our favorite Christmas song right now…