Saturday, January 23, 2010

Marvelous Works Don't Come Easy

The year I turned 20, my mother—an expert with needles and threads—asked if I’d be interested in learning to crochet. I wasn’t interested in the least, but she repeated the question often enough that I finally gave in and said OK.

Three decades and umpteen afghans later, I remain grateful for her powers of persuasion. Not only has crocheting brought me hours of tranquil pleasure, it is a reflector of life in so many ways.

Each piece of crochet begins with a single strand of shapeless thread. Red, yellow, black or white, the possibilities are all the same. An afghan? A doily? A sweater? A shawl? Whatever the creator wants, the creator can produce. All she needs is patience and a plan.

Likewise, we all begin life as common, shapeless human beings with infinite possibilities. Red, yellow, black or white, we’re all precious in the Creator’s sight. And although we might view ourselves as nothing more than shapeless threads rolled into fuzzy useless balls, the Creator doesn’t see us that way. He has a plan for the threads of our lives, and he longs for us to surrender the crochet needle and let him do a marvelous work.

Of course, surrendering is easier said than done. Too often, we expect the “marvelous work” to be finished overnight. Now! Pronto! Yesterday!

But, alas, marvelous works don’t happen overnight—I’ve made a few in my time. They require staying power, resolute focus and a steady stream of unvarying stitches.

How well I remember ripping out rows, and rows, and ROWS of one of my favorite afghans because I got in a hurry, lost my focus and skipped a line on the instruction sheet. It was a painful experience—ripping my beautiful afghan apart—but if I wanted a marvelous work, the ripping had to be done.

Similarly, our Creator longs to make something beautiful of our lives. He wants us to be useful in his Kingdom, but he won’t force us to surrender the needle and let him design his plan.

Like the good Father he is, he waits patiently while we crochet our own dreams and goals (making boo-boo, after boo-boo, after boo-boo) hoping that, one day, we’ll examine our lives in the light of his Word, conclude that something is terribly askew and surrender the needle to him.

Yes, the ripping might be painful. But the marvelous work will be sweet.

I'm linking up with Charlotte and Ginger at Spiritual Sundays. I hope you'll join me there for spiritual insight and inspiration.


  1. this is beautiful... thank you. Sarah

  2. You always give me something to think about. The afghan is beautiful and looks so soft. I have one started that I really need to finish to give to my daughter.

  3. Hi Gayle,
    A wonderful post; thank you for sharing it with us. Love your analogy. Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful Sunday.


  4. I love the analogy of crocheting partly because I have made umpteen afghans too both knitted and crocheted. I learned to crochet and embroidery when I was 7 or 8 years old. I didn't learn to knit until I was about 13. Although I haven't done any needlework in the last few years I look back and smile when I think of all the sweaters, scarves, doilies, socks, etc. that I made through the years. I don't think today's young people know what they're missing by not learning these skills and I have the feeling not many are interested. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

  5. This was just a wonderful analogy! You've given me much to think about. Thank you for blessing us with this..Debbie

  6. You are very talented, and I loved that great post. I also am a songwriter, and would love to get something recorded. Blessings ~

  7. I just read Dayle's post. Her's is just before yours. She is a great writer and so are you. What a beautiful message written in such an interesting way.

  8. Beautiful thought. Beautiful afghan. I'm proud to call you sis.

  9. What a perfect analogy. God is so patient with us.I'm so glad you shared this beautiful post today.
    God Bless,