Puzzling Design

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My sister and her family came to town for the holidays. We were able to celebrate our annual Family Fun Week—where we gather together from across the country as a whole group. For the past several years the adults have used the evenings to build puzzles while we talk. This year, my sister-in-law Brittany, my sister Amy and I broke into a new skill set: necklaces.

We worked on our jewelry over several nights. And at least for me, it was very telling. I am definitely a people-pleaser, so the pressure of knowing others would look at what I was creating caused me to quake.

My designs changed significantly as the days went on. I became more aware of what I actually wanted in a necklace and what I would really wear. The final evening, Amy asked me to create matching designs for the three of us girls using beads she especially liked. Since Brittany is in a different color palette than Amy and me, I knew I’d need to add something different to hers. I decided that to truly create something we would all love I would need to use the same elements in three unique ways. I was nervous but pressed on anyway.

Necklaces I designed for the three of us: Amy, Brittany, and Me

Funny that something as simple as designing necklaces for family would cause me to stress out. I sometimes struggle with the fact that I desire to make things more beautiful. It is part of who God made me to want to be surrounded by beauty. C’mon God! Why not a wonderful ability to speak? Why not clear insight or a really good mind for languages or numbers so I could really be effective for your kingdom?

This past week, I mentioned to my husband Dave that it grieves my heart to know there are children who never hear that they are important. Who never heard that God loved them so much He sent His Son to die for their sins. Who may never know they can do what He has called them to do.

And I was struck: I don’t really believe that for me. When I look at myself I see all the shortcomings ... the fear of speaking, the lack of a mind for languages. I tend to view my abilities as somehow less than important. I scoff at the fact that a delight in beauty could have something to do with God. That an ability to see patterns and colors would have anything to do with serving Him.

Our church is doing a series on breakthrough. Realizing how little value I place on myself and who God has made me has brought that to front of mind. I want to break through my own self-talk and fears and be who God has designed me to be. Regardless of what others think or what I feel would be more “effective.” If I want to tell others they have value, I have to also recognize my own value. Even with something as simple as designing a necklace.

Until next time!
-Jonelle

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One Comment

  1. Carol

    Jonelle, what would our world be like if God our Creator had stuck to one pattern for flowers, trees, animals, people ... and only one shade of green, one shade of red, one shade of blue. God is overwhelmingly generous in his creation, and he has planted that creativity in you. Your desire for beauty is his gift for you - to use to bless him and others. Embrace it with all your heart, honey. Thank you for sharing.