Hopes and Seams

Crafts, refashions, and sewings to DIY my way through life

Archive for the month “July, 2011”

Clothesline Merits

Materials Needed: belt infatuation, cotton clothesline on clearance ($1.50), hot glue, 2 buttons, hair tie, a couple hours

“Several years ago I was scheduled to speak at a large church on the West Coast. Arriving at the church about fifteen minutes before the Sunday morning service, I learned that one of the pastoral staff had died suddenly the day before. The staff and congregation were in a state of shock and grief.

Grab a vase and wind clothesline around base for a perfect circle. Hot glue the tip.

“Sizing up the situation, I realized the ‘challenge to discipleship’ message I had prepared was totally inappropriate. The congregation needed comfort and encouragement, not challenge, that day. I knew I needed a totally new message, so I silently began to pray, asking God to bring to my mind a message suitable for the occasion.

Wind around a few more times until you have 4 concentric circles. Cut and glue outside tip. Repeat, and you will have...

...two loops like these!

Then I began to add up my merits and demerits for the day: Had I had a quiet time that morning? Had I entertained any lustful thoughts or told any half-truths? I had fallen into the performance trap.

Take the two loops and slip knot them to one another.

“I quickly recognized what I was doing, so I said, ‘Lord, I don’t know the answer to any of those questions, but none of them matters. I come to You today in the name of Jesus and, by His merit alone, ask for Your help.’

Flatten out the middle knot and fold the top loop to the middle...

And repeat with the bottom loop until it looks like this! Glue everything in place.

This is how the back looks 🙂

“A single verse of Scripture came to my mind and with it a brief outline for a message I knew would be appropriate. I went to the pulpit and literally prepared the message as I spoke. God did answer prayer.

With remaining clothesline, measure out three strands that are double the length of your waist and braid them. The finished braid should be long enough to go around your waist twice (almost)

“Why did God answer my prayer? Was it because I had a quiet time that morning or fulfilled other spiritual disciplines? Was it because I hadn’t entertained any sinful thoughts that day?

Fold the braid in half. Thread the top half through the top two holes of the center knot, and thread the bottom half through the bottom two holes.

“No, God answered my prayer for only one reason: Jesus Christ had already purchased that answer to prayer two thousand years ago on a Roman cross. God answered on the basis of His grace alone, not because of my merits or demerits.

Take the ends of the braid and glue them together.

“One of the best kept secrets among Christians today is this: Jesus paid it all. I mean all. He not only purchased your forgiveness of sins and your ticket to heaven, He purchased every blessing and every answer to prayer you will ever receive. Every one of them – no exceptions.

Find a couple buttons. They are uncertain about their fate. Don't be uncertain, buttons!

Sew the buttons on both sides of the braid. I chose to sew it over the glued ends to cover that part up so no one will see! 😛 Sew on either side so that the belt will be reversible!

“Why is this such a well-kept secret? For one thing, we are afraid of this truth. We are afraid to tell even ourselves that we don’t have to work anymore, the work is done. We are afraid that if we really believe this, we will slack off in our Christian duties.

Find a hair tie and slip knot it on to the opposite side of the braid (the side that is on the other side of the knot. sigh. Ok, you'll see it in the next picture)

“But the deeper core issue is that we don’t really believe we are still bankrupt. Having come into God’s kingdom by grace alone solely on the merit of Another, we’re now trying to pay our own way by our performance. We declared only temporary bankruptcy; we are now trying to live by good works rather than by grace.

SooOOoo....the belt will close in the back like this 🙂

et voila!

“God is not keeping score, granting or withholding blessings on the basis of our performance. The score has already been permanently settled by Christ. We so often miss this dimension of the gospel.

Wait until morning to try it on with a plain dress. (Jersey black dress, clearance at Target for $12! What a steal!)

Back closure. Kind of ghetto but meh.

tres summer cool, non?

– Excerpts from pages 12-14, and 16 of Transforming Grace by Jerry Bridges.

have fun!


Love and Goodwill

Scour your nearest Goodwill store for pretty things that could be put together for your stand. I found two small plates, a ceramic bud vase, and a crystal candle holder. Total: $6 (ish)

More love to Thee, O Christ, more love to Thee!

Hear Thou the prayer I make on bended knee.

Epoxy: my best friend
Give your treasures a good wash. While they dry, let me introduce you to my other best friend (aside from my hot glue gun): EPOXY. My genius engineer husband introduced me to Mr. Epoxy as a super strong adhesive to glue together ANYTHING I WANT!!!

This is my earnest plea: More love, O Christ, to Thee;

More love to Thee, more love to Thee!

Push the epoxy into a disposable thingamabob. Mix with another disposable thingamabob. It takes a few minutes to set, so very quickly…
…grab your dry treasures and figure out how you want to arrange them. I paired the candle holder with the fancier plate, and the ceramic floral plate with the bud vase. 🙂 I thought the vase looked better as a base when it was upside down.

Once earthly joy I craved, sought peace and rest;

Now Thee alone I seek, give what is best.

Place plates face down.

This all my prayer shall be: More love, O Christ, to Thee;

More love to Thee, more love to Thee!

Apply epoxy to surfaces that will be in contact with plates. :/ You can’t see the epoxy, sorry. It’s the shiny stuff. I used the stick thing to apply it around the candle holder, and I used an old makeup sponge for the bottom of the vase.

Let sorrow do its work, come grief and pain;

Sweet are Thy messengers, sweet their refrain,

Glue the bases to the plates! Just eyeball to make sure it’s centered.

When they can sing with me: More love, O Christ, to Thee;

More love to Thee, more love to Thee!

Time for the hardest part: waiting. I hate waiting for epoxy to set. Genius husband always says I need to wait a day before moving it, but I would say that within 10 minutes, it sets enough to move carefully. But let’s be patient today, so grab a bag of flour…
…and a bag of sugar to set on top. You probably don’t NEED to do this, but whatevs. Let it sit for a night…

Then shall my latest breath whisper Thy praise;

This be the parting cry my heart shall raise;

…and on the following morning, flip over and VOILA! ah! *swoon* AAAHH!!!!
my new bracelet stand. 🙂 yessss!!!!!!!
HI you little CUTIE!!
Have a tea party. By yourself.

This still its prayer shall be: More love, O Christ, to Thee;

More love to Thee, more love to Thee!

squeal, smile, and enjoy! 🙂

“More Love to Thee, O Christ”

by Elizabeth P. Prentiss (1818-1878)

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