We stayed up late watching the ball drop this week, toasting peach champagne and eating berry cobbler (can you tell I’m ready for summer?), and as we counted down the seconds…10…9…8…7…I felt something that I hadn’t expected to at that moment, nor have I before during any of my slippers-and-robe-clad, tv-watching New Year’s Eve’s of late. Was it cobbler euphoria? Overwhelming gratitude at not being soaking wet and covered in confetti in the middle of Times Square? No, this was something else. An indescribable hope.
Yes, there was hope that my ears would recover from my kids’ record breaking celebratory volume, enjoyed at decibel levels unprecedented in modern noisemaker history. And hope that this year I’ll be better at at making freeze ahead meals, and replying to emails, and biting my tongue when I’m about to say something that really doesn’t need to be said (not to be confused with actually biting my tongue, like I did last week when a child jumped up to hug me, deadlift-style, making perfect high speed skull-on-chin contact. Let’s just say, now have a slight lisp that I hope isn’t permanent.).
Anyway, trying to be better is usually what’s on my mind around this time of year, and I’ve posted about it many times before…committing to be better at patience, better at grace, better at quietness. There’s never a shortage of good intentions. This year is different though. This year, I’ve not made a single resolution. And it’s not because I’m not hopeful, but because the hope I am feeling has absolutely nothing to do with anything I could possibly resolve to do.
I’m feeling such a renewed understanding that even when I’m *not* better, and especially when I’m downright awful…when my resolutions fall flat on day 8, and I muck up the page and make a complete and utter mess of things (so my style), that that is not the end of this story! I’m not celebrating the possibility that I might do a little better this year, but rather that someone has already paid the price for all the crap I’m going to throw down in 2019, and loves me in spite of it, totally as-is, broken and messy. Nothing I could achieve this year could increase that love!
Have any of you ever read through the Bible in a year? I never have, and I’m happy to say that this is my year. I’m following a chronological reading schedule along with my mother in law, and right now we’re in Job. Good times. Talk about sobering… I thought we could use some fresh happy book covers to keep things bright, so here’s the one I made for her. Finished it just in time for Christmas (and by just in time, I mean, I literally bound it on Christmas afternoon, minutes before left for Christmas dinner).
I found this NIV version called “The Books of the Bible” that features a very minimalistic format…no chapter or verse numbers except on the very bottom of the page in a subtle print, and no narrow columns- all full page width. It reads so differently from the Bibles I grew up with! Makes me feel like I’m reading a novel and less like I’m wading through chopped up text, phrase by phrase.
I hand quilted the cover with a simple running stitch in pearl cotton. I didn’t put much thought into the batting choice as I was just digging for a scrap that was about the right size, but am so glad I happened to use wool with a nice fluffy loft! It really makes the stitches stand out, which I love!
The text fabric I used is a print called “Whatever is Lovely” from my Meriwether collection, and I was SO excited to be able to incorporate it in this project because this was the exact use I had envisioned for it from the very beginning. I thought, wouldn’t it be great to have a print that featured my most cherished uplifting scriptures…the ones that really bring me out of the pit?!
I’m the kind of person who just always has that urge, when I read a really powerful verse, to want to write it on an index card and tape it somewhere in my house. I feel like the more I see them, the more they soak into my spirit. So that’s what this print is for me…a way for me to scatter these verses across my day so hopefully I’ll bump into them more often.
So that’s where my heart is this week…soaking in the start of a New Year, hopeful, and celebrating the truth of the ages. Never gets old.
Hoping your New Year’s was exciting and joyful, as you look ahead at 2019! What are your resolutions? What little nudges has your heart been feeling?