I had the privilege on Saturday to attend an introduction to lace making organised by our church’s women’s ministry group. Apparently, one of the definitions of lace is “a bunch of holes surrounded by a thread!” We got to try out making bobbin lace using 8 bobbins and threads. My attempt was indifferent but some of the other ladies made some very respectable lace fishes.
One thing that struck me, however, was the number of bobbins and threads involved in even quite a narrow piece of lace.
Imagine a wide piece of lace! Lace makers do it and manipulate hundreds of different threads. They work according to a pattern and what seems to the casual observer like a tangle, is all part of the pattern.
Another thing that struck me was how long it takes to make lace. It requires patience and love. Some pieces take years.
We are like the threads in God’s great lace pattern. Individually we are nothing but a thread but put us over and under other threads and the pattern is created. We can’t see the pattern but the Lord is the Grand Designer. He know exactly what He is doing. No relationship or interaction of ours is not used as part of the pattern – even when we mess up. When Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery, they sinned, big time. However, God used it for good. God uses even our mistakes and our rebellion. However, it takes time. Joseph was in prison for about 20 years.
The wisest thing for a bobbin to do is just be passive until the Master directs our next interaction. If a bobbin were suddenly to say “I see the pattern, I am going to go ahead on my own,” you can be sure that things will not go well.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. Rom8:28 ESV
Lord, please help me to trust you even when things around me look like a tangled mess. Help me to remember that you have a plan and a pattern and “you make all things beautiful in your time” Amen