Thursday, October 30, 2008

Quilting 101

I love quilts. Quilts of all kinds. If I were going to have a collection of something it would be quilts. Well, and buttons...but that is an entirely different post. I decided several weeks ago to attempt to make a simple square pattern quilt of my own. My beloved joyfully took me to the Quilt Haus, and I picked out some pre-cut squares to begin my adventure. I chose a collection of fabrics called "Prairie Paisley." This is how I do most things, I get some wild hair and decide to do something new. I have no clue what I am doing or what I am getting myself into...but I dive in nonetheless. Anyway, we get home and I immediately begin to try and piece this thing together. I just couldn't do it. I couldn't find a pattern of laying things out that I liked. I was so frustrated. Richard ever so lovingly pointed out that the quilt on our bed had no pattern either. He told me to get over it and get to quilting. I put everything back into the bag and hung it on my bathroom door. Fast forward several weeks through a trip to Michigan and an emergency trip to Kansas for my grandfather's funeral. There I was in my bedroom with that bag of scraps taunting me. So yesterday I pulled them out, and with out worry (OK, there was plenty of worry...but I pushed through) about how it would look minus a definable pattern, I got to sewing.

I never dreamed that during this project the Lord had some teaching for me. While piecing this thing together, I realized that life is very much like a quilt. Quilts consist of many different colors and patterns of fabric. Some of them, by themselves are incredibly unattractive.

Others are more boring. Nothing exciting or abundantly beautiful.

Others are beautiful. The colors and pattern are exactly what you love. Just looking at the can make you smile.

When randomly pieced together, they make a wonderfully beautiful masterpiece.

Our lives are much like this. Some of the moments in our lives are ugly. They can be painful, dark, and confusing. Battling a sin or a stronghold, fear, illness, the loss of a loved one, waiting that seems as though it will never come to an end, hope deferred. We don't like these times, and often fight to get though them as quickly as possible.
Then there is the day to day life. Boring and routine. Nothing terribly dark, yet nothing to make you gasp at the beauty either.
Sprinkled in you have those moments that make you stand back and look in awe and wonder. Maybe it is glimpse of how amazing our God is. Maybe it is a special moment with a spouse, shared only between the two of you. Or a good laugh with a friend, who knows you so well, she can tell by the look in your eyes, what you are feeling at that very moment. It is welcoming a new life into your family. Witnessing your children grow to love the Lord. Sharing the Gospel, and seeing someone being touched by God.
These moments in our lives, all of these moments, the Lord, in His sovereignty, stitches them together, to make a masterpiece of His glory. The dark patches in my quilt, only help to bring out the beauty and color of the ones I love. Those boring ones, that I am not thrilled with...well they bring a much needed balance. A quietness that is needed. In my day to day life it is sometime difficult to see the beauty. Cooking, cleaning, laundry, and math facts hardly excite me. Yet these too, are ordained by God. A blessed gift of grace to me.
However, unlike my quilt there is a pattern to the Lord's work. Planned before the foundation of the world. He is using these times, to shape me and mold me into the likeness of His Son. He is always working all things together for good, for those who love Him. When He is finished with me, I will be perfect, and He will present me blameless before the throne. On that day, I will see with great clarity, how beautiful each moment of my life was. I only pray that I can see a glimpse of it here on earth as well.


Emily said...

"This is how I do most things, I get some wild hair and decide to do something new. I have no clue what I am doing or what I am getting myself into...but I dive in nonetheless." So true I have to giggle, but then I keep reading and see that your hairbrain idea was ordained by God to give you a wonderful picture of His work in our lives. Beautiful.

lauradodson said...

Sweet Friend, we have the same exact taste in fabric... My first quilt that I am almost done with and will be working on this weekend is, in fact, the same exact charm pack + a jelly roll. I purchased it at the quilt haus and have blogged about it. Just click the 'nesting' under my catalog cloud and you can see for yourself!

Oh. I like buttons too. I have lots. I'll show you sometime.

Your quilt looks fantastic!!! I have to tie mine and put the binding on and then I'm done!

laurad said...

ok. so i'm back. i actually read the post this time instead of looking at the pictures.

your quilt is so beautiful and your story even more so, because it is true!

patched quilts (and lives) are the best kind. :o)

laurad said...

i'm stalking you...

your new banner is lovely, and i can tell you're enjoying your new study.