Writing about the day to day mysteries of life.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Accomplishment, Quilting and Confidence

I have enclosed a post from Donald Miller.  I really enjoy his perspective on Christianity and life and I  coincidentally read it the day I was questioning my confidence.  I had overheard two women discussing a project they were working on.  One said, "We have done great work.  I am really proud of us, I feel we have found our calling."  I never really pat myself on the back like that.  I then went to a quilt show and realized that my quilts are really good!  I do a super job and should be really proud of myself.  I don't take compliments well.  I am going to work on it.  I don't recognize my accomplishments.  I am not looking for praise, I just need to hold myself in higher esteem.   I am good at a lot of things and need to stop being so hard on myself. 

About three weeks ago, I was fifty or so flight of stairs into my workout. I’m going to try to climb Mt. Hood in early June. The training has gone okay, but I have my doubts. I’ve not lost the weight I thought I’d lose, to be honest. That happened when I trained to ride my bike across the country, too, and everything turned out fine. And yet I worried. What if I didn’t make it? I started feeling defeated, even with eight more weeks to train. I began to wonder if I had what it took.
But I reasoned with myself. I thought about all that I’d done before, and reminded myself that I had, indeed, ridden a bike across America. Yeah, but, I thought to myself, that doesn’t count.
No kidding. That is what I actually thought. I had to stop for a minute. Now the truth is, I really did ride my bike across America. I rode around 3,000 miles in one summer (you can actually cross in less, but our team took a southern route, then turned north to add some miles for reasons I’ll never understand).
That’s when I realize, I don’t own my successes. So I kept climbing the stairs, and began to reflect on the idea that I will readily accept a failure, even meditate on it, but I won’t accept an accomplishment.
There’s nothing healthy about that.
The truth is, we operate out of who we believe we are. And God needs us to be strong, because there is important work to be done. God isn’t served when we can’t own our own accomplishments. He doesn’t want us arrogant, but He does want us confident. God has delivered us in the past (in partnership with our actions) and He can do so again.
I made a mental list of all my accomplishments. I thought about them as I climbed the stairs that day, and have come back to them sense. I want to learn to own them, so I’ll be prepared the next time I’m challenged, so I won’t be burdened by doubt.
My question to you is, do you own your accomplishments? Do you own your failures? And if you own your failures, and not your accomplishments, why? Does God want you to disregard the memory of the things you’ve done well? I don’t think He does.
Would you mind doing something for me today? Would you pull out a sheet of paper, or open your journal, and list your accomplishments? Just keep a running list, all day. I think you’d be surprised at who you really are. I think you’d be surprised at what God could possibly call on you to accomplish.

Here are the pictures of my latest quilts, my recent accomplishments.  I am actually quite proud of both of them.  I really enjoyed making them and I think they turned out great.  The purple tree quilt is from the Cindy Souder class I took.  It was fun and I finished the quilt!  The salad quilt is my April quilt. Ian and I were discussing what we did in April and he helped my come up with the design.
I went with a friend to a salvage yard named House Werks, it was really interesting.  It is in a cool old building.   I bought a light casing of some kind and I am going to paint it and make into a bird house. Maybe I should modge podge.  I think it will be very cute.  They only had one or I would have bought more.

I also went to the Sheep & Wool Festival today.  I bought some Angelina Fiber and silk worm cocoons.  I see these every year and do nothing about it, this year I bought them.  I think I might dye them red and make them into little Santa Claus ornaments. 

I have included a picture of the caterpillars eating leaves.  You can see the hardened cocoons, the worm is dead inside. It rattles when you shake it.  The better silk is from the cocooms with the worm inside.  The silk cocoons that have a bore hole from the worm make less desirable silk.  You then boil the cocoons and the threads come loose, you throw away the brown caterpillers.  You then can spin the silk roving.  It is a cool process.  I am not going to make thread, I don't know how to spin.  I need no new hobbies.  The silk roving won't felt.  You can needle punch it into the felt in small amounts, accent color.

I also bought a cute little robot made from Sculpey.  Ned likes to do clay, so I thought we could make them this summer.  I won't set the clay on fire next time - oops!  It was exciting and very smelly!  Fortunately, Ned was enough interested in the char-broiled beads and didn't get upset that I ruined them all.

I was only half listening to the radio yesterday, but I swear a restaurant said the special for the week was "flash dried frog legs".  Could this really be possible and edible.  Quite truthfully, WHY?   My pool, which is just leaf scum right now, is full of frogs.  They are so noisy.  I took a flashlight out on Friday to investigate the chatter and there had to have been over twenty of them.  I am definitely not sauteing them up for dinner.  We are not going to take eating local to that extreme.

I am going to read two magazines tonight.  I have the new issue of "Cloth, Paper, Scissors" and "Quilter'sHome".  Cupcake, it just isn't the same without Mark Lapinski.  Mark, where are you?


  1. Ooh! I love this post! It's so true! And to be completely honest, it's why i continued writing when I did... and continued to have faith in myself. I knew the Lord wanted me to do this. I knew it. I just didn't know how I was ever going to succeed--just that I had to.

    And can I just say how amazing you are? Seriously?
    What you've done and are doing, I could never ever do! I'm astounded!

  2. Oops! I meant to sign that--

    Jenni James