Reaching for Faith – Tubing – Feeding the Filling Through

To feed the filling into the tube, thread it onto a large dull needle.   Leave only a very short tail.

Reaching - Tubing - Starting the Fill by Carmen CS
Reaching – Tubing – Starting the Fill, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Then insert it into one end of the tube.

Reaching - Tubing - Feeding onto the Needle by Carmen CS

Stroke the tube from the end of the needle until it bunches up near the head.  Make sure the needle doesn’t pierce the tube.  If it does, just back it off.  My right hand is grabbing the bunch so it doesn’t let go, while my left strokes the tube.

Reaching - Tubing - Tube Fed On by Carmen CS
Reaching – Tubing – Tube Fed On, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Here the tube is completely bunched up on the needle.

Reaching - Tubing - Pulling the Filling Through by Carmen CS
Reaching – Tubing – Pulling the Filling Through, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Finally, pull the bunched tube down off the needle onto the filling.  Pull the filling through until the loose end comes free, and unthread it from the needle.

Prayer: Father, help me to find You in all the details and little chores of life and craft and ministry.


Show Me the Way – As Presented

And here is the piece framed, as I presented it to her.

Tulips - Temporary Frame by Carmen CS

Tulips – Temporary Frame, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

I always frame my pieces before giving them.  The last thing someone going through troubles needs it to be faced with the effort and expense of framing a piece of needlepoint!  But custom framing for so many pieces is beyond my reach.  I therefore design my pieces to fit standard frames, which are more modest in price.

When I presented this piece, she agreed with me that it would benefit from custom framing with a mat.  I’ll post a picture of the final framing once it is done!

Prayer: Father, I pray this piece will continue to bless her and remind her always to turn to You.

An awareness of our past failures…

“An awareness of our past failures especially tends to buffet the mind as we pray. Suddenly we feel hopelessly unworthy of offering our petitions.”

From my morning readings in “The Hour That Changes the World”, by Dick Eastman.

{14} fear of rejection by KatLevPhoto
{14} fear of rejection, a photo by KatLevPhoto on Flickr.

So what is important to remember is that grace is a gift.  It’s not a one-time gift, that we can mess up, but an ongoing blessing.

That’s not to say that we can sin whenever we want with no effect.  But it does mean that if I come to my Father in penitence, He is always ready to hear from me.

Show Me the Way – Stretched

Here is the piece fully stretched.  Note that you do not place pins at the corners, as that would not fit into the frame.  The piece should now look even and flat.

Tulips - Stretched by Carmen CS
Tulips – Stretched, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Prayer: Father, I pray for beauty, peace, and joy in her life and her work.

What you’re doing today…

“What you’re doing today may not feel like enough. But if you’re simply saying yes to Jesus and whatever he asks, then it is more than enough— it’s world changing. And so are you.”

From my morning readings in “You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream”, by Holley Gerth.

you have kept the best until now by stainedglassartist
you have kept the best until now, a photo by stainedglassartist on Flickr.

Even when it doesn’t feel like enough.  Even when you can’t actually DO anything.  If you are following Him, you are giving your best.  And it can only grow if you stay with it!

Reaching for Faith – Tubing – Tube and Filling

Where the arch passes behind the flame, I wanted it to look like it shone through.  To get this effect, I used a tubular rayon ribbon, which can be filled with another fiber.  I used 2 strands from the flame fiber as the filling.

Reaching - Tubing - Tube and Filling by Carmen CS
Reaching – Tubing – Tube and Filling, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Prayer: Father, I want you to shine through my life!  Please wrap me in Your love and You light.

Show Me the Way – Spreading from the Centers

Next, start spreading out from the centers.  Place a pin every 1 1/2 – 2 inches.  Make sure they stay on the same line.  Pull the canvas taut as you go.

Tulips - Spreading from the Centers by Carmen CS
Tulips – Spreading from the Centers, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Prayer:  As she shapes her life, help her to start from the center, the core things, and grow peace and harmony from there.

Let my heart be broken…

“I once heard of a man pray, “Lord, let my heart be broken by the things that break the heart of God.” That is a hunger for partnership with God. That is the heart’s cry of a believer who truly wants to be used by God to further His work in the world.”

from “Friend of God, the Legacy of Abraham, Man of Faith” by Ray C. Stedman

Waiting for Rain in Burkina Faso by United Nations Photo
Waiting for Rain in Burkina Faso, a photo by United Nations Photo on Flickr.

But once my heart is broken, I want to be able to help.  Just feeling bad about a situation isn’t enough.  So I pay attention to the things around me, that are heartbreaking, that I can help with, if only a little.

Christian love is not just a sentimental emotion, it is the springboard for service.

Show Me the Way – Centers Placed

Once the first pin is placed, pull the canvas taut and place the next T-pin in the opposite edge.   Then do the other two edges.  At this point the canvas may look worse, but just hang in there!

Tulips - Centers Placed by Carmen CS
Tulips – Centers Placed, a photo by Carmen CS on Flickr.

Prayer: When we start stretching, it can pull unpleasantly.  She stretches so much!  Father, grant her ease from the pull.

The temptation…

“the temptation is to make our dreams about proving that we are enough, and then they become about us. But when we begin from a place of love, belonging, and acceptance, our dreams are about the One who calls us.”

From my morning readings in “You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream”, by Holley Gerth.

Santa Iglesia Catedral,Morelia,Estado de Michoacán,México by Catedrales e Iglesias
Santa Iglesia Catedral,Morelia,Estado de Michoacán,México, a photo by Catedrales e Iglesias on Flickr.

I struggle with this.  I don’t _feel_ like I’m enough, and I need to prove it, not to others, but to myself.  What draws me on in my faith, though, is the idea that I _am_ enough for God, that He loves me, that I belong amongst His children, and that I can begin to accept myself.

Thank you, Father, for helping me with this and allowing me to make my dream ever more about Your work and less about me.