Truth in ‘ill-matched threads’

Life as Art: ill-matched threads

She who reconciles the ill-matched threads of her life, and weaves them gratefully into a single cloth…..

Rainer Maria Rilke

That line of poetry has been rolling over and over in my head for a week now. It speaks to me for obvious reasons as a maker of textiles, but the sharper truth is that I have a great number of ill-matched threads in my life, and I struggle – often neither gratefully nor gracefully – to reconcile them.

The demands and the joys of motherhood, the imperative to make us a living with a complete lack of sovereignty over my workspace, laughter and play and muddy feet and carpets and elderly cats with bladder issues. Etcetera.

The hope I find here, though, is possibility. I have been guilty at times of assuming that the best I can achieve with the threads available to me is a skewed and lumpy rag, fit only to be hidden under the sink for private and menial use. I’ve wished for different threads, felt ashamed to hold mine up alongside the smooth, glittering perfection of others. I’ve managed little sections of silky loveliness, only to feel despair and frustration when all that’s left to continue with that day is a kinked and prickly hemp twine.

The hope I hold on to is the image of the weaver (and it might just as well be knitting, crochet, or any other means of creating cloth), not judging her threads, grateful to have them as they are, using her creative soul and skill and ingenuity to work them into a unique and lovely textile; a sturdy, yet flexible cloth with fascinating textures and mesmerising eddies of colour. A cloth that is, like any great art, exactly what it needs to be – no more, no less.

received from http://impulsivearts.typepad.com/knitting/2010/06/life-as-art-illmatched-threads.html Thank you.

How often I feel like this, that what I have to work with doesn’t really amount to much. This woman had only a box of ointment, yet she did what she could, regardless of how others judged.

Mark 14:3-9  And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head. And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made? For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her. And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always. She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the  burying. Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.

bold/underlining mine

This is what we are responsible for: doing what we can with what we have for the glory of God.

PS  This is the only post I’ve read from Knitting on Impluse, so I don’t know any other content of the blog.

Published in: on June 16, 2010 at 11:45 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Tomorrows in Jesus Hands

When I was about 15-16 years old, my Dad and I sang ‘I don’t know who holds tomorrow, but I know who holds my hand,’ as a special for church.  It is a precious memory for me.

That was many years ago and I really didn’t know what the song meant. I hadn’t had to trust for myself that Jesus really did hold tomorrow. Now after going through some tomorrows that were really dark, I know, I believe, I am trusting that Jesus to continue to hold my tomorrows, today.

I Know Who Holds My Hand

I don’t know about tomorrow;
I just live from day to day.
I don’t borrow from its sunshine
For its skies may turn to grey.
I don’t worry o’er the future,
For I know what Jesus said.
And today I’ll walk beside Him,
For He knows what lies ahead.

Many things about tomorrow
I don’t seem to understand
But I know who holds tomorrow
And I know who holds my hand.

Every step is getting brighter
As the golden stairs I climb;
Every burden’s getting lighter,
Every cloud is silver-lined.
There the sun is always shining,
There no tear will dim the eye;
At the ending of the rainbow
Where the mountains touch the sky.

I don’t know about tomorrow;
It may bring me poverty.
But the one who feeds the sparrow,
Is the one who stands by me.
And the path that is my portion
May be through the flame or flood;
But His presence goes before me
And I’m covered with His blood.

Malachi 3:6  For I am the LORD, I change not; 
Hebrews 13:8  Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

Published in: on May 17, 2010 at 1:33 pm  Comments (1)  
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Sorting and Packing

Many years ago, my mother moved from Fresno, CA to Mt. Vernon , Illinois to Naples, Florida;  she went through her years of McCall’s Needlework magazines and ripped pages out that she wanted to keep because she couldn’t take the whole stack with her. I thought that was sacrilegious; I had spent hours in those magazines. They were the bible of needleworkers.

Today I finished going through 12-15 years worth of Knitting magazines ripping out pages I wanted to keep for the very same reason; magazines are too bulky and I don’t have enough room to keep them.

I wonder what did my mother think about while she ripped? Was she focused as I was on the probability of really making the item for which I saved the directions; . . . slipping the pages into page protectors that would finally find a home in a three-ring binder.

I may never make many of the items I have saved, but when I look at the binder I will remember the stack of magazines on the shelf and the enjoyment of dreaming about making or trying every one.

Published in: on May 16, 2010 at 9:55 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Planting

In the hazy “tea leaves” I see:

Planting

by Cinda Thompson

Two

Old people work

Side by side

She wears a hat

The old man boasts no hair

She moves

And he kneels

He digs

And she nods while

He speaks

To the seed

She ardently covers

Row by row

They rise and bend

Over their garden

On earth

Sunflowers will bloom

Toward

Late summer.

I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.For we are labourers together with God: ….1Corinthians 3:6 -9

(I like “tea leaves”.)

A Garden Door

A door shut in my life that I never thought would shut. I never dreamed it would shut like it did. I was in shock, I wondered why, I laid the door at Jesus’ feet. He picked up the door and carried it away. He opened a new door to a garden. What a Mighty God I serve!

Published in: on March 14, 2010 at 12:41 am  Leave a Comment  
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I AM THAT I AM

God is His own equivalent, and God needs nothing but Himself to achieve the great purposes on which He has set His heart.

I AM THAT I AM  Exodus 3:14

Whatever life may bring to you,
“God” will ring true to you;
Star in your sky—
Food in your store—
Staff in your hand—
Friend by your side—
Light on your path—
Joy in your heart—
In your ears music—
In your mouth songs.
Yes, rapid as your race may run,
And scorching as may shine your sun,
And bitter as may blow your blast,
And lonely as your lot be cast—
Whatever life may bring to you,
“God” will aye ring true to you.
Charles. Herbert

Am I a God at hand, saith the LORD, and not a God afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD. Jeremiah 23:23

Published in: on March 14, 2010 at 12:28 am  Leave a Comment  
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“nor charged God foolishly”

As Job had grace, God has been flooding me with grace and it seems a very special peace, and carrying about our futures.

Job 1:21 And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.
Job 1:22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

Job 1:21
Naked came I out of my mother’s womb – I had no earthly possessions when I came into the world; I cannot have less going out of it. What I have the Lord gave: as it was his free gift, he has a right to resume it when he pleases; and I owe him gratitude for the time he has permitted me to enjoy this gift.
Naked shall I return thither – Whither? Not to his mother’s womb surely; nor does he call the earth his mother in this place. In the first clause of the verse he speaks without a metaphor, and in the latter he speaks in reference to the ground on which he was about to fall. As I came out of my mother’s womb destitute of the earthly possessions, so shall I return. There; i.e., to the earth on which he was now falling. That mother earth was a common expression in different nations, I allow; but I believe no such metaphor was now in the mind of Job.
The Lord gave – The Chaldee has, “The Word of the Lord, gave; and the Word of the Lord and the house of his judgment, have taken away!” Word is used here personally, as in many other places of all the Targums.
Blessed be the name of the Lord – The following is a fine paraphrase on the sentiment in this verse: –

“Good when he gives, supremely good;
Nor less when he denies;
Afflictions from his sovereign hand,
Are blessings in disguise.”

Seeing I have lost my temporal goods, and all my domestic comforts, may God alone be all my portion! The Vulgate, Septuagint, and Coverdale, add, The Lord hath done as he pleased.

Job 1:22
In all this Job sinned not – He did not give way to any action, passion, or expression, offensive to his Maker. He did not charge God with acting unkindly towards him, but felt as perfectly satisfied with the privation which the hand of God had occasioned, as he was with the affluence and health which that hand had bestowed. This is the transaction that gave the strong and vivid colouring to the character of Job; in this, and in this alone, he was a pattern of patience and resignation. In this Satan was utterly disappointed; he found a man who loved his God more than his earthly portion. This was a rare case, even in the experience of the devil. He had seen multitudes who bartered their God for money, and their hopes of blessedness in the world to come for secular possessions in the present. He had been so often successful in this kind of temptation, that he made no doubt he should succeed again. He saw many who, when riches increased, set their hearts on them, and forgot God. He saw many also who, when deprived of earthly comforts, blasphemed their Maker. He therefore inferred that Job, in similar circumstances, would act like the others; he was disappointed. Reader, has he, by riches or poverty, succeeded with thee? Art thou pious when affluent, and patient and contented when in poverty? Clark’sCommentary edited

Even When It Hurts

from: life lessons, Elizabeth Berg, January 2010, Real Simple

…..I know now that the dictionary definition of ragout is “a richly seasoned stew of meat and vegetables.” For me, it will always suggest another kind of mix:  a warm kitchen on a winter’s day, an old friend’s condor and absolute trust, and a new friend’s generosity in giving me a recipe, which is always about more than it seems. That’s because sharing the things that nourish us helps to fill an empty place. Sometimes that place is the stomach. Sometimes it’s the heart. And sometimes, the best times, it’s both.

So thankful for friends and family,  especially the person who will tell me what I need to hear, even when it hurts.

Published in: on February 5, 2010 at 10:38 am  Leave a Comment  
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This is Believing

What is it thou wouldst have done, that He cannot do if He think it fit?

And if He think it not fit, if thou art one of His children, thou wilt think with Him; thou wilt reverence His wisdom, and rest satisfied with His will.

This is believing indeed; the rolling all our desires and burdens over upon an almighty God; and where this is, it cannot choose but establish the heart in the midst of troubles, and give it a calm within in the midst of the greatest storms.    Robert Leighton

Mark 9:24 And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.

Published in: on January 29, 2010 at 2:09 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Preparation God’s Way

What God may hereafter require of you, you must not give yourself the least trouble about. Everything He gives yo to do , you must do as well as ever you can, and that is the best possible preparation for what He may want you to do next. If people would but do what they have to do, they would always find themselves ready for what came next. George Macdonald

Published in: Uncategorized on January 12, 2010 at 11:37 am  Leave a Comment  
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relatively

Evening tidbit

never judge a person by their relatives, they did not choose them.

Published in: Uncategorized on January 11, 2010 at 12:06 am  Leave a Comment  
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Avoiding trouble

Evening tidbit

To avoid trouble, breathe through your nose. It keeps your mouth shut.

Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise:
and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.
Proverbs 17:28

Published in: Uncategorized on January 10, 2010 at 12:42 am  Leave a Comment  
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I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

This Christmas carol is one of my favorites.
Sometimes life does seem in despair, but there is still hope, God is still in control, I am still His child.

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old familiar carols play
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head
There is no peace on earth I said
For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep,
God is not dead, nor doth he sleep.
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, good will to men.

– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Psalms 43:5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

Published in: Uncategorized on December 19, 2009 at 12:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Road to Joy

Joy is the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires. See evoked, the prospect, a road, a journey, a walk; not all flat and smooth, not at sunny and fresh. I want to persevere until I get there. I don’t want to be side=tracked because the way isn’t as I imagined. What ever it is that you desire keeping walking until you get there.

The Road to Joy
© 2009
Julie Jordan Scott

I had a simple writing and art journal prompt yesterday
from the Bliss Journaling Yahoogroup I belong to –
– “Joy” – which always seems to lead me into
singing Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy.”

I pulled out my watercolor moleskine and attempted
to mix a purple from two different hues and instead, got
a sort of brown, not so pretty color which I meant
to paint into a Road of Sorts.

The phrase “Ode to Joy” was replaced by “Road to Joy”
and off my mind, heart, and paintbrush went, skipping,
hopping and occasionally stumbling or needing to rest,
to catch my breath.

Here is a photo of my journal pages:

The Road to Joy is dappled with mud, not daisies as a
lesser soul might suspect.

The Road to Joy is dirty, with twists and turns and rocks
and craters and lies and disapproval

The Road to Joy is fed by forgiveness and light, packages
tied up in hope and trust and movement

The Road is big and tall and complete, even and especially
in moments of active, intentional stillness.

The Road to Joy is paved with stones of grace, of passion,
of loss and discovery and tears and brokenness that becomes
whole and breaks again.

The Road to Joy passes by your door and my door and his
and hers and theirs as well.

The Road to Joy is in conversation, it is in argument, it
is in laughter and winks and open hands and arms
and tapping toes.

………….

The Road to Joy Is?

The Road to Joy is….

The. Road. To. Joy. Is…

Bernstein said, “Beethoven was a creature of grace and
innocence and trust – hope and future and immortality. ”
Sort of like me. Sort of like you.

Your road to joy is…..

=====

John 15:8-11 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, …

Published in: Uncategorized on December 4, 2009 at 7:51 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Thanksgiving food for thought:

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire.
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something,
for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations,
because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge,
because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes.
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary,
because it means you’ve made a difference.

It’s easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who
are also thankful for the setbacks.

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
and they can become your blessings.

~~Author Unknown.~~

Published in: Uncategorized on November 23, 2009 at 1:56 am  Leave a Comment  
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