There’s a beautiful poem/song that I have enjoyed for quite some time. I first heard it in 2000, shortly after Mike died. [Note: This piece was actually written in 2009. I chose not to update it to reflect current events but leave it as originally written. Since writing this poem I have been widowed a second time and have moved forward with my life. Recently as I was working on a quilting project I was reminded of this poem and how it shows us in a physical way how God sees the upper, finished project and we, from the earth, see all the threads and cuts on the bottom. I shared this with one of my hospice clients with whom I showed a project I am working on using small pieces of fabric to make a quilt. The photo attached to this blog shows an example of this project where I cut, sew, shape, cut and sew more pieces together. Some pieces of fabric are so small and could represent the little, perhaps insignificant times in our lives that we may not remember but are part of what shapes our lives.)
My life is but a weaving Between my Lord and me, I cannot choose the colors He worketh steadily.
My woven canvas tapestry began on ** **, 1956 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Waterbury, Connecticut. A larger tapestry had already been started. That weaving included two brothers, a sister and, of course, a mother and father.
This tapestry was woven in colors of green, blue and white, one color blending into the next. It was a peaceful piece of art and looked much like the others being created at that time.
Such are the weavings of my childhood. A time when the Master Weaver was quietly at work and I, unaware of anything but the “here and now” was content in a life of play and carefree innocence.
As weeks turned into months, and months turned into years, the images on the canvas started taking shape. More colors were added – shades of red and hues of purple. Now and then small specks of black pushed through the canvas. Still, the tapestry was similar to those around it.
Teenage years represent a “coming of age” – a time where pubescence starts to change the way life is viewed. Physical bodily changes and emotional changes. It was during this time I lost three of my four grandparents,,, the first time I was exposed to death (other than pets).
As years became decades, portions of the tapestry went unfinished and then the weaver would gently start in another corner of the canvas, patiently waiting for the piece to take shape.
It wasn’t long before a few pink strands were threaded in and the canvas took on new life. The piece became vibrant and nearly danced in the breeze created by the characters. For nearly two decades, the weaver kept busy as the canvas was filled with many colors and shapes.
In my twenties and thirties I sent through a lot of changes. College graduation – moving west – marrying – having two daughters – various jobs and schedules. Life was busy.
Oftimes He weaveth sorrow, And I in foolish pride Forget He sees the upper And I, the underside.
Occasionally, a bit of gray was used to add depth to the piece. You could see hills and valleys. And, at times, the weavers needle wove in the wrong direction until the error was noticed at which time corrections could be made and the weaver appeared to be on track again.
On and off for fifteen years I struggled to stay on track spiritually. My faith was strong – but my spiritual direction ebbed and flowed due to lack of finding connectedness with a church.
One day, some large black thread got mixed onto the shuttle with all the other colors.
The day my husband unexpectedly died marked a critical turning point in my life.
The weaver became more noticeable to me now. I had watched him now and again over the years and admired his work.
The dark threads are as needful In the Weaver's skillful hand As the threads of gold and silver In the pattern He has planned.
As he skillfully worked on his tapestry, I could see all sorts of threads intertwined on the backside of the canvas. When the large black thread managed to push through the canvas, the weaver worked diligently to blend other colors around it so it wouldn’t overtake the rest of the picture taking shape.
It was at this point that my faith actually became stronger. I had taken many things for granted before – but now I knew that God had a purpose for my life and I would need to watch and listen to know what direction to go.
Before long, most people looking at it could hardly see it. Trained eyes might see it, others could only find it after someone told them where it was.
I am fully aware that my life is and ever will be a constant evolution as I hold each day and each new experience, examine it closely, and use it in the best way possible. Instead of saying, “What now?” or “Why me?”, I ask “What am I supposed to do with this information?’ I look for the opportunities to use my life experiences to guide others in their lives.
It’s been over fifty years since this canvas was started. It appears to be about half completed, but, truth be told, if the weaver chooses, he could finish it at any time.
Not till the loom in silent And the shuttles cease to fly Shall God unroll the canvas And explain the reason why.
Each day is the first day of the rest of my life. I choose to be active, taking control of those things I can in order to be fulfilled. I know that I could depart this world at any time – so I cannot waste my life in a negative, useless way.
Today – the present moment – is mine to share and to use.
The Weaver My life is but a weaving Between my Lord and me, I cannot choose the colors He worketh steadily. Oftimes He weaveth sorrow, And I in foolish pride Forget He sees the upper And I, the underside. Not till the loom in silent And the shuttles cease to fly Shall God unroll the canvas And explain the reason why. The dark threads are as needful In the Weaver's skillful hand As the threads of gold and silver In the pattern He has planned. - Author Unknown