“Jesus, I give you permission to interrupt my self defeating, God dethroning self talk. Amen.”
I found that quote somewhere, dropped it in here and thought, “I’ll know both where it was from and what to share when I get back.”
It is Lent. I almost don’t need to say more. Except that during Lent I’m actually quilting again. I’m getting ready for a class in a couple of weeks and my brain now hurts with some prep work I need to do. I’m also waiting for a piece of equipment that will sit on the desk/sewing table for my phone to act as a second camera. Oof.
Here’s the Class Description and a link: mix1teri will get you $20 off the cost of the class. I’d love to have you join the fun.
Thread with Color
At one time, thread choices and color options for quilters were limited to the basics. Now that we have a broad range of thread colors, fiber and weight, how can we possibly choose the right ones for each project? From fat quarters to postcards to pure-stitchin’ fun, Teri will share her must-haves for color and a super secret she really wants the world to know.
The quilt to the right will be shown along with the thread choices and inspiration for the quilt.
Back to Lent, the quote, and the weekend. The ability to go into my sewing studio and quilt is returning. I am grateful for friends who have walked with me during this as they have listened with kind hearts. The last time this happened I ended up stitching Shine Your Light. Whether God permitted this to bring me closer to Himself or this is an assertion of my own free-will I do not yet know. That said listening to my machine whilst I stitch is a beautiful thing. I’m grateful to be stitching again and to see what happens when I give over to the creative facet of my brain, the freedom in stitching and watching a vision become something tangible.
Every person has a rich, vivid thought life, most of which we don’t talk about, discuss, or admit. Sometimes, for me, this thought life is wildly beautiful in the quilts that come from that place. Sometimes the Aha moments are so sublimely beautiful my heart swells with deep gratitude. Sometimes the thoughts are painful and ugly, full of doubt and mistrust, and shockingly I’m really hard on myself. Over the weekend through some unpleasant, downright hard thoughts I noticed something, a root, a taproot that goes deep. I’d noticed this one before through one of it’s sturdy tendrils producing weird plants in the core of my being. We all know what happens then, weird plants, unhealthy fruit. Also known as deep wounds in need of healing and the icky behaviors that come as a result. These were brought to my attention in a new-to-me way over the last few weeks, leading to this weekend.
One of my heart sisters and I have a standing date. We’ve been meeting, texting, reading and getting to know one another very deeply over the last 18 months or so. There is more to what I’m about to share so please know all of this is leading to something good. When she didn’t show up I sent her a text letting her know I understood her need for quiet, accompanied by a photo of the empty seat across from me. Then headed for the gym, about 2 1/2 miles away. By the time I arrived there she’d responded letting me know that her weekend was terrible, giving me some insight. I offered head back, her first response being no, go do your work out. I offered again and kinda wouldn’t take no for an answer. This is why assuming is not a great thing to do. Although in this weekend between the place where I am in the Spiritual Exercises, Lent, and in Spiritual Direction this ended up being very different than expected. There is great grace in this moment, for both of us, that is difficult at best to explain. Our conversation ended up being far more than either of expected in both its sublime sweetness and in what is revealed, brought to light for both of us.
Which leads me to:
Over the weekend we learned that Fr Mike’s mom died. Please pray for the family.
As a quilter, quilt teacher, and writer about many quilty things I know that All of this, all aspects of this, becoming even remotely good at quilt making takes practice, time, willingness to make mistakes or have icky experiences like the rotary cutter and my finger, or the needle and my finger or miscutting the good fabric, or I could go on ad nauseum however I do believe you get the point. This stuff is going to happen. And when it does we can walk away from quilting entirely, or we can take a momentary break to regroup and keep moving forward. In part lesson learned, in part we’ve gained experience which will lead us to better cutting, piecing, quilting, choices in tools. And with the rotary cutter, change the blade.
My heart sister has a way of praying that I admire deeply, it’s intimate, much more formal and is built into the rhythm of her day. I like it. And…..it’s not for me. I am digging into the Spiritual Exercises and am struggling quite delightfully with where I am in this experience. I’m also struggling to learn guitar so there you have it. This style of prayer, and why I’m with it right now, willing to struggle engages the creative part of my being in a way that places me in the story. It’s difficult to admit that when I write there are times when I take on the Pharisee or Saducee because yeah, I am that person sometimes not quite getting what Jesus is saying or desiring to accept His invitation to intimacy and holiness. I sometimes write fiction pieces using the parables or interactions that Jesus has with people to fill out the details. While they are fictional, they do enliven, fill out, reshape, what I’ve heard for years.
They are also great for showing me the places in my heart and mind that are in need of reform. Which is why I’m learning to play guitar, because being a beginner at something is a fantastic reminder of the beauty of falling down and getting up, of trying one more time with the experience of trying it before. Through the last couple of weeks the callouses on two of my fingers are coming along quite nicely thank you very much, permitting me to practice for longer periods of time. I am working on the same four pages, going over and over and over them. I will add one more page soon, and I’ve added a metronome app to my phone so I can develop an understanding of keeping time. For now, just as with the machine quilting I need to find the right rhythm. I’ll get there.
In so many ways I want to tell you to hang in there if you’re struggling this isn’t a bad place to be in. It’s not fun, it is often downright harder, painful and icky than any of us would care to admit.
For now I’ll refrain from that because in so many ways there is a need to change the conversation. That time is coming when I’ll be able to just know in the meantime I’m praying for you. I’m enjoying the beauty of this Lent and Fr Mike’s homily is, well, you’ll know.
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