Please Read: Exodus 35
I hang out with craftswomen…quilters. They are my peeps. We have our own language.
- the quarter inch seam
- strip club
- fat quarters
- jelly rolls
- charm packs
- layer cakes
I quilt because I love creating something of lasting value – something that you can hold in your hands – something that doesn’t need to be done again tomorrow…like housework. I like to give away my quilts as a tangible expression of my love for the recipient. It’s my way of wrapping them up in love and showing them that someone notices and cares.
The Girls Got Skills
In the book Outliers, author Malcolm Gladwell says that it takes roughly ten thousand hours of practice to achieve mastery in a field. I started quilting in 2001 and have made over 200 quilts so I’ve definitely put in my 10,000 hours learning quilting skills and techniques from wise, older women along the way. God’s Word says that there’s another reason we become excellent at crafts. Craftsmanship is also a spiritual gift God gives.
“Look, the Lord has appointed… Bezalel… He has filled him with God’s Spirit, with wisdom, understanding, and ability in every kind of craft to design artistic works in gold, silver, and bronze, to cut gemstones for mounting, and to carve wood for work in every kind of artistic craft. He has also given both him and Oholiab…the ability to teach others. He has filled them with skill to do all the work of a gem cutter; a designer; an embroiderer in blue, purple, and scarlet yarn and fine linen; and a weaver. They can do every kind of craft and design artistic designs.” Exodus 35:30-25
Wisdom. Understanding. Ability. Craftsmen Bezalel and Oholiab were filled with these attributes but they also could teach and had a bunch of talented women helping them.
Everyone whose heart was moved and whose spirit prompted him came and brought an offering to the Lord for the work on the tent of meeting, for all its services, and for the holy garments. Both men and women came; all who had willing hearts brought brooches, earrings, rings, necklaces, and all kinds of gold jewelry… blue, purple, or scarlet yarn, fine linen or goat hair, ram skins dyed red or manatee skins… Every skilled woman spun yarn with her hands and brought it: blue, purple, and scarlet yarn, and fine linen. And all the women whose hearts were moved spun the goat hair by virtue of their skill. The leaders brought onyx and gemstones to mount on the ephod and breastpiece, as well as the spice and oil for the light, for the anointing oil, and for the fragrant incense. So the Israelites brought a freewill offering to the Lord, all the men and women whose hearts prompted them to bring something for all the work that the Lord…had commanded to be done.
Exodus 35 has more encouragement for us. Life is busy. It’s hard to take time to slow down and do activities that feed the soul. But God actually commands us to take a break. He created the world in six days and then He Himself took a break. A quilting break always refreshes me and gives me a new lease on life. As I work with my hands, I have time to think, to listen to beautiful music or a missed podcast, a time to pray.
“These are the things that the Lord has commanded you to do: For six days work is to be done, but on the seventh day you are to have a holy day, a Sabbath of complete rest to the Lord. “
In the book Agape Leadership Robert L Peterson and Alexander Strauch shared the spiritual disciplines of RC Chapman – including the fact that “He firmly reserved each Saturday for himself, conducting no business and only seeing visitors in emergencies. His favorite spot for relaxing his mind and body in communion with God was a woodworking shop.”
I made a image below that you can download or print but here’s a list of some of the other disciplines RC Chapman practiced:
- Feed your spirit daily.
- Prayer is your constant business.
- Early to bed.
- Early to rise.
- Long, vigorous walks. Daily.
- Eat simply.
- Eat sparingly.
- Fast one day a week.
- Reserve time for yourself (do something you love!)
Questions to Ponder
- When do you make time for yourself? How does the art inside of you come out?
- Have you ever taken a Spiritual Gifts test? What was the result?
- Have you ever thought of artistic ability as a spiritual gift that you can use to give glory to God?
Lord, thank you for all your good gifts. Thank you for leisure activities that give us so much happiness. As we create, it gives us a chance to understand in the tiniest way what You must’ve felt like when You created the world out of nothing and called it good. Your art is forever changing – season to season. Thank you for making our world such an interesting, ever-changing place of beauty. .Amen.