An Overriding Thought!
Have you ever had one thought that just keeps running around your brain and won’t quit? That’s what I had a week ago during our highly successful Affiliated Women’s COFFEE in the NEIGHBORHOOD Spring women’s conference workshop. The event is called “BOLD WOMEN of FAITH” and the May 2 event was the 2nd in our twice annual series.
“From whole cloth” kept occurring to me as I listened to April Jurgensen, Monique Elliott and Lexi Jones, Indianapolis, share the stories of Ruth, Esther and Mary the Mother of Jesus. They wove their personal stories into those of the bold women of Scripture about whom they spoke.
What in the world could the Lord mean by dropping “from whole cloth” in my mind for the better part of a day? And a day when we were focused on women of faith who took considerable risks to be obedient to Papa God!
When I Was Young. . .
My mother had me engaged in every opportunity a young woman could have. There was elocution and etiquette lessons. Then dance, piano and voice. I was a brownie scout and then a girl scout. And of course, 4-H.
In my youth, 4-H was primarily a farm kids organization; but gradually us city girls joined and took advantage of the great opportunities the organization offers. While I enjoyed baking and cooking, my entries never rose above average. The one thing I gravitated to was clothing. Shortly after my 8th birthday, I was gifted with a sewing machine and as the saying goes. . . the rest is history!
I took to sewing like a duck to water. I made everything a young seamstress could tackle. I loved every aspect; from shopping for the pattern; choosing the right fabric to shaping sleeves, bodices and intricate collars. But most of all, I loved pulling the fabric from the package and laying out the whole cloth in preparation to be cut into pieces that would eventually become a finished garment.
I recall the thrill of laying and pinning pattern to cloth; cutting and beginning the process of fitting the pieces together. I especially loved working with wool. So much so that I won the 4-H dress revue my senior year in high school with a wool tweed suit. I wore it until it was thread bare and cried when what was left went into the trash.
Whole Cloth and God’s Purpose!
There was a reason I loved being an expert seamstress (and I was an expert). There was a very specific reason I loved laying out the ‘virgin’ cloth before pattern or pin desecrated it. Little did I know that my passion for “whole” cloth was perfectly knit into my DNA before I was born.
Working with ‘virgin’ cloth is like working with ‘virgin’ ideas. Ideas that have not yet taken shape or form but hold all the potential to be something of considerable value when in the hands of a skilled developer.
Ideas that are the pattern pieces pinned and cut from whole cloth that become an entrepreneur’s dream business. Ideas that become the next miraculous breakthrough in medicine and science. For me, whole cloth meant the the passion infused within me that would become the foundation of God’s purpose for forming me in my Momma’s womb!
Hey Hey. . .
Who knew? I certainly didn’t. I just knew I loved to sew. Sometimes more than eating. I would fix dinner for husband and daughters, then return to the sewing machine to do just one more small ‘tweak’ to a waistband or hem. It was like lifeblood to me. The entire process from whole cloth to a garment carefully ironed and hung on the mannequin was a joy I still cannot thoroughly describe or define. A sense of complete and utter satisfaction!
So why did it take me so long to make the connection between sewing and Papa’s purpose? Only He knows. But something about the May 2 BOLD WOMEN event drove it home to me in spades.
Perhaps it was that the event itself is a piece of whole cloth until the moment it takes shape and form as the 1st woman steps to the stage?
Perhaps it’s was the joy of watching what took months to pin in place and cut into shape, become a well-turned garment hanging perfectly fine on the door of the hearts of women who attended the event?
What’s Your ‘Whole Cloth’?
*Do you know what passion has been with you since you can remember?
*Do you know what it is that gives you a delight you cannot easily define or describe?
*Has the Lord spoken the same words to your heart over and over again until you could no longer ignore them?
Over the years, I caught a glimpse of the foundation of His purpose for me. But it didn’t impact until the words wouldn’t go away as I listened to the stories of women who found their purpose in the midst of difficulty, confusion, doubt and possible death.
It’s true that such circumstances are exactly what Papa God uses to get our attention and bring us into an understanding we failed to recognize in years past. Our purpose in the Lord is dependent on listening to His voice and paying attention to what He is saying; and discerning how the passions of our lives point to the purpose which He has hidden in our spiritual DNA.
So I’ll ask the question of you again. . . what is your ‘whole cloth’? If you know, comment it here. If not, share the journey you are on to learning what it is.
Linda S. Fitzgerald, M.S.Ed, CEO & Visionary Partner
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