Monday, February 18, 2013

Buttons and Deliberate Things

I'm at Mom and Dad's for a visit. My boys cluster their grandfather - there's a game board and a snowy sky and the sweet blessing of time.

And I sit in the rocker and stitch. Sewing is not my thing. My mom looks over, now and again, with a watchful eye. She knows that sewing and  I don't get along. She offered to help, but I want to do this myself.

I bought this coat two years ago. I got it for a steal. True, most of the buttons had been stripped off. I had to gather them from the floor.

I listen to my boys and visit with my mom and pull the thread tight. It feels good to accomplish this task. I love the coat. It has a vintage feel.

I'm not going to fuss too much about measuring. I'll just align the buttons with the holes, while the whole thing is draped over my lap.

I visit and stitch and celebrate when each button is tethered to the front of my coat. I'm proud. Seems I've mastered the menace of a needle and thread.

There's got to be some grace in the placement of the buttons. It's not a science, after all.

So I finish and I'm so thrilled I could whoop with joy. It's taken a long time to take the time. But now the coat is done. My boys offer applause. There's a basket of sewing task at home and they know it gathers dust. Finishing this coat is a big deal.

My boys' smiles are sweet. They stop their game and pause to watch.

I slip the coat over my shoulders and push the first button through the hole. I'm excited, so I button fast, and I don't see until I'm finished that one side hangs a good four inches below the other.

"Oh,Mama," Zay says. "I think you skipped a button on your coat."

But I didn't skip a button. The buttons and holes weren't aligned. There's a hiccup, a bubble of fabric, between a few.

The coat was better with no buttons at all.

"I can't believe it," I say. I'm frustrated.

Why didn't I measure?

Why wasn't I careful?

So we ride home in the evening and my coat, once again, has no buttons. I've plucked them off and they're tucked in the pocket again.

Deliberate. I should have been more deliberate with the placement of those buttons.

And I begin to think.

I want to be deliberate with the things that matter most. I don't want to be haphazard with the important things in life:

-growing in my relationship with the Lord
-sharing about Jesus and the gift of His love
-caring for others
-loving my husband well
-teaching my children the Word
-learning to live forgiveness, patience, and grace

Deliberate living.

With the things that matter most.

The coat? Oh well. So what if it will be another two years before I have the time for those buttons again.

 It's almost spring.

And there are more important things.

Lord, help me to take the time, to be careful, intentional, and deliberate, with the matter-the-most things. Amen

And thank you, thank you to the sweet son who showered mercy and sewed those buttons back on my coat. In the right places. Wahoo!

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