Sewing and Thinking.

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I've been sewing....a lot. Sewing, ripping seams out, fixing broken needles, ripping more seams out, messing with the tension...and, ripping more seams out. For the amateur, self-taught seamstress, this often-times tedious pastime is a labor of love and not necessarily that of leisure (especially if there is no such thing as "free time" in one's career as mom and wife.) Nonetheless, this year's Christmas handiwork of choice is sewing. Lofty goals for gifts on a very basic, very dated sewing machine.

Despite my efforts to adjust the machine properly, I found myself fighting continuously with inconsisitency and erratic stitching. Homemade should not be junky, but it should look homemade right? Well it's gonna have to be this year as my propensity towards perfectionism is being buffered by an uncooperative mechanical elf. I rest on the hope that each of my loved ones knows my love for him or her apart from the emmaculate-rating of my gift. My gift is sacrificial in effort, but by no means flawless. Hang in there, you know I'm going somewhere with this.

Sewing is also a thinking time, so of course, the great comfort came to me that my gifts offered to the Lord are neither perfect nor consistent. I may try to express my love for Him through something crafted of my flesh, but still come up short. Of my own ability, my gifts are not adequate for a righteous and holy God. Yet, Christ is perfect, and becomes the means by which we can produce good works and good fruit. (Jesus is the perfect sewing machine...ha. The analogy breaks down.) How blessed, then, are we to know the truth of Hebrews 13:15,

Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name."

The perfect gift we are to offer up to the Lord is our praise, that emanates from a yielded heart! And do you see, it is "through Him," because apart from the work of Christ we have no ability to continually praise, continually bless His name in good times and bad, or continually offer up the end, or sacrifice of ourselves. Does that encourage your heart as it does mine? I pray we know the joy of trusting in His gift this season.

(I'll post full pictures soon, when the threat of spoiling Christmas presents is over. *wink*)