When I’m on a deadline or really deeply into machine quilting I watch, and by watch I mean have playing in the background, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy – the extended versions. I have two due dates coming up fairly quickly so it’s been on for hours. I’m flitting back and forth between my home sewing machine and the longarm. The other day I heard Treebeard say, “Young Master Gandalf” and thought Wow, Treebeard must be ancient! (I’ve not yet read the Silmarillion so I’m sure there’s story here) Throughout this epic we see Gandalf, Aragorn, Frodo, Sam, Boromir, Gimli, Legolas, Merry and Pippin become more fully who they are meant to be over time, and through difficulties and in relationship.
I finished a quilt meant for a magazine and am not, at this moment able to share it publicly. As I quilted it I noticed two things 1) as careful as I was with piecing and pressing there are still a mistakes; 2) they are not terrible and 3) sometimes finished is better than perfect. As I bound the quilt last night I realized that with the batting used a single layer of this particular batting would have been a lot better, the usual second layer didn’t do a lot for the quilt. This is something of an experiment and I do love the batting though.
In thinking about an end of the year (and now beginning of the year) post I asked a friend what I should write about, her answer: The Incarnation. Which is wildly different from an end of the year roundup post. When I woke up the first time this morning I started praying for an old friend, drifting back to sleep. When I woke up at five the brain started pondering the Incarnation. Immediately following this I listened to Jeff Cavins reflect on today’s Gospel from John 1: 1 – 18, which he mentions is a mini or compact version of salvation history from creation through our redemption. Whoa.
The Word became Flesh
The Spirit of the Lord hovers over the surface
The WORD became flesh, and dwelt among us, lived with us, to be With us in all of it.
There is an intimacy here, deep, dynamic intimacy paired with a God who is vulnerable with us, who desires a relationship with us in such a way that he comes as one who is in deep need, an infant, growing first in Mary’s womb, listening to her heart beat. Sigh. What an incredibly beautiful gift, sharing fully in our life. The WORD became flesh and dwelt among us.
Sometimes it is hard, even with my own vivid imagination, to imagine that our Creator loves us so much that He came to live with us, to show us how He intended us to live. Even though people around him questioned, doubted, left, found his teachings difficult and hard. I’ve struggled with believing at times. I can remember speaking this doubt out loud and in that moment it would have been so easy to walk away. I knew though, I knew that Jesus is, as he promised, the Blessed Sacrament, the Eucharist, Holy Communion and walking away, giving into that particular doubt would mean that Spiritual Death. There was a moment, which I’ve shared when I had NO experience of God at all. NONE. Zero. It was so, so painful. Should I ever go through that again I hope to have enough grace to get through it, how St. Teresa of Calcutta did this for so long I have no idea. It’s taken a while to get to a place of gratitude for that time, and yet here I am. Grateful
I’m grateful for the yearning to know God more. Some days I think I’d like to study theology or philosophy and yet I am working on mastering quilting which, in some ways teaches both of these. I’ll dig more into that. For this particular moment I need to go finish a quilt. Which means more Lord of the Rings Extended Versions.