I made a redemptive wreath this week. What is a redemptive wreath, you ask? Excellent question. It may be the only one of its kind.
Now let me say at the outset that this is not a crafty, DIY post. No, that’s not me. I learned a long time ago that, though I love art and creativity, my gifts bloom through words, not with a paintbrush or a glue gun.
Nevertheless, my glue gun got a workout this week as I came to the conclusion that my fall wreath finally needed to be given to the trash can. “I bet I could make a new one,” I thought with a burst of handmade hopefulness. So after some Pinterest searching, I armed myself with a list and made my way to Michael’s.
As I sat through the evening glueing gourds and little orange acorns to my new grapevine wreath, the real creativity began to swirl not on my craft table but in my head. I began to think about the last wreath I made… almost 20 years ago.
I was very young and newly married. Life was full of possibilities and my dreams were many and varied. One of my fledgling hopes was that I could make a living doing something with my hands, creating something like… seasonal wreaths, yes, that’s it. I’ll make seasonal wreaths!! I’ll be a DIY diva!!
Unfortunately I had very little experience with crafting apart from high school picture collages and dorm room bulletin boards adorned with stiffy bows. (Not to mention no Pinterest site to show me what to do and how to do it.) But I plowed ahead undaunted, filled with hopes of selling my wreaths to a local crafty consignment shop.
1. I didn’t know what I was doing.
2. The wreaths weren’t very good.
3. I was impatient for success.
I was so impatient, that as I offered a sewing-themed wreath (I don’t sew either) over the counter to the consignment lady, I noticed that the craft glue on one of my little sewing novelties hadn’t even dried. There it blobbed, white and glaring at us. She noticed it, too. She hesitated, then handed me back my firstborn wreath and kindly refused my other offers.
I was crushed. All my hopes of homemade fame died in that little downtown consignment shop.
I did what any self-respecting crafty hopeful would do. I quit. My mother-in-law graciously hung one of my wreaths on her door for a few years, but that was it. It’s store-bought door decor for me from now on.
Until this week. Now don’t get me wrong. This time, I set out on this creative wreath-making journey very realistically. I harbor no hopes of rocking the craft world with this little project. Especially now that I have friends who are true artists and I see the beautiful work that comes from their hands. (If you want to see the real deal, check out the work of my good friends Kristin and Allison, at WinsomeEasel and Garland & Pendant.)
No, I don’t want to sell my newly made wreath or tell you how I made it or even make one for you.
I just want to hang it on my front door.
As I quietly went about working on my new project, I didn’t tell anyone what I was thinking. About how this wreath was weaving redemption in a part of my soul that I had forgotten about. God started whispering to me about patience. It’s taken 20 years, but I think I have more patience now at age 41 than I did at age 21.
I am more patient with myself, more content with who I am and less anxious to be somebody else.
I am more patient with my limitations, learning that though I might not be able to be anything I want to be, I can wait to become the person God made me to be.
I am more content with my work, knowing that it takes time for true art to develop. Sometimes you have to live the book before you write it.
Sometimes you have to wait for the glue to dry.
God began to whisper to me about waiting for the glue to dry in several different areas of my life. Waiting for the glue to dry on my art, giving my words a chance to season and simmer. Waiting for the glue to dry on my kids, patiently walking with them through the difficult stages of their lives, not rushing maturity. Waiting for the glue to dry on my calling, letting God work it out and develop it as he will. Sometimes you have to wait for the glue to dry.
What about you? What are you learning about patience? Is God calling you to wait for the glue to dry in any area of your life?
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