After collecting an excessive amount of running tee-shirts from years of races, I finally put some of them to good use!
Sorting through my unique collection, I chose some that stood out to me and had them turned into a beautiful tee-shirt quilt.
It turned out better than I expected!
Each piece of fabric brought back memories from a particular race. Some had happy memories attached to them while others emitted feelings of misery and disgust.
This shirt represents my first 5K. The race I thought was on flat pavement turned out to be a difficult trail run through the woods. I really felt like quitting!
This one was a half-marathon through pouring rain the entire time. The kind of rain where you’re literally soaked to the bone and you can hardly see in front of you through the water gushing down your face.
This race was actually an obstacle course–A TOUGH MUDDER– I vowed years before I would NEVER do. After some prompting from my brother, I decided to do it anyway. Muddy from head to toe, I truly did not recognize myself in pictures from this insane mud run.
But other shirts on this same quilt have happier, more positive feelings attached to them.
This was my first half marathon! I can still conjure up those feelings of elation from crossing the finish line.
This race was a fun 5K my family did together. No pressure. Just a fun race where lots of unexpected prizes were given out at the finish line party.
Ah yes! This one represents the best time I ever had for a half marathon. Perfect conditions. Best pace ever. (And no injuries!)
I looked at each shirt, traveling back in time to relive each of these races. The good, the bad and the ugly. But then I stepped back and looked at the quilt as a whole.
Yes, when all these shirts were weaved together, it symbolized my entire running journey. It was beautiful!
But as I continued looking at the quilt, I saw something much more powerful….
This quilt is a beautiful picture of what God does with US!
Hang with me here, and please don’t miss this!
God is a master at weaving the seasons of our lives together–the good, the bad and the ugly–and He knits them together with threads of grace. And over time, He takes these individual moments of our lives and turns them into a beautiful tapestry of glory!
The 5K I ran where I wanted to quit? That’s like the seasons of life when we are ready to give up because we’re disappointed or our expectations weren’t met.
Running a race in pouring rain? It paints a picture of those times we’re trying to survive the storms of life.
Ha! And the Tough Mudder where I was a crazy-muddy-mess? Don’t we all have seasons like that? Where we are such an absolute mess we don’t even recognize ourselves. Life knocks us to the ground and we wonder how we’ll ever get up to keep going.
But we also have those seasons of happiness. The times we are living in our sweet spot, using our gifts and talents for God’s glory.
And we have those moments when life is just good. Our families are thriving. We have unexpected blessings heaped upon us when we least expect it.
And I’ll bet you can think back to moments in your life when you felt so successful. You accomplished something you’d dreamed about. Something you worked really hard for.
So just like this quilt represents the good and not-so-good moments of my running journey, in the same way,
God is continually weaving the moments of your life together for a greater purpose of displaying His glory.
So we have to be patient and we have to trust Him. Maybe you feel stuck in a season of wanting to quit and you can’t see beyond the difficulties.
Maybe you’re stuck in a muddy mess and you don’t see a way out. But I can assure you there is a clear path up ahead if you’ll just hang on. Because God is already taking the fragile threads you’re grasping on and is weaving them into something strong and beautiful.
It’s easy to get hung up on the current set of circumstances we’re in if that’s all we’re focusing on.
But when we take a step back and look at the big picture, we can see how God is weaving everything together for our good and His glory.
Which seasons of your life stand out to you–the good, bad and even the ugly–where God held you together with His threads of grace?
Blessings to you today!
Check out my devotional book, EMBRACING THE RACE