Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Unfinished Quilt

In the last decade I have made four quilts, all of the same pattern.  I cut two inch strips of different colored and patterned material and sew them together.  I attach a matching back to the quilt, as well as the batting in between, and sew it together.  Then I quilt down the center and the edges of each two inch strip.

The first was for our bedroom and was a test of the pattern.  The second was for my son which I made while he was deployed in Iraq. (You can read about that quilt, and all my journal entries while he was deployed in the label "A Mother's Heart in War.")  The third was for our dear friends Tom and JJ after they moved to Tennessee.

The fourth sits unfinished in my storage room.  The strips are sewn together and the back is on, the quilt is pulled tightly in the frame, but the quilting is only half finished.  It seems our lives now offer little time to sit still and quilt.  Each time I see it on the shelf, I resolve to take it down and finish it.  After a time of not even touching the needle, it goes back up on the shelf.  Perhaps the day will come when the quilt is finished, but for now, it simply waits.

I find myself like the quilt.

The Lord has begun His work of transformation in my life, but He is not finished yet.  There are parts of me that still need to be pulled more tightly on the frame.  There are places that need the touch of the needle.

Unlike my quilt on the shelf, however, I know the Lord will finish the project He has begun in me.  He is not just the Beginner of my transformation, He is the One who continues it and He is the One who will finish it.  I will not remain on the shelf incomplete.

 "Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:" Philippians 1:6

The quilt that is me will one day be "conformed to the image of His Son," and I will be a finished product.  For now, that transformation is, like my quilt, a matter of one small stitch after another.

As the old hymn says:

"Some through water, some through the flood, 
Some through the fire, but all through the blood.  
Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song, 
In the night seasons and all the day long," 

He is working in and through me, stitch by stitch, to perfect that which He has begun.  The Lord is the Author and the Finisher of our Faith and He always completes that which He has begun.  Always.

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