Today Shirley and I were making the rounds looking for some sculpting supplies and instructional books on sculpting that would help me do it better. After my heart attack back in 1995 I started sculpting and produced statues the district superintendents would purchase and give to those persons being ordained in their districts. The piece was entitled “Ordination” and pictured Jesus standing in front of this kneeling person (one for male and one for female) with one hand on their shoulder and the other on their head.
As we were on our hunt we went to Barnes and Nobles, asked where the sculpting books might be, and was told to look in the craft section. Guess what? In all of that store there is not one book on sculpting. But I did find one book whose title almost brought me to my knees laughing. It was titled: “Stitch ‘N Bitch.” It was about knitting… but we all know it was really about life.
When Shirley was young – say elementary to middle school, her mother would make some of her clothes… especially party clothes. Years ago she told the story of her mother working on this prom type dress, you know fancy and all that stuff. It was made of red velvet – which I am told is impossible to work with – it has a knap to it and shifts as you try to sew it. Margie would sew for a while, get ticked and throw it in the corner. She would settle down and come back to work on it at a later time. Needless to say it spent a lot of time in the corner. But, it was finished and Shirley did wear it.
When we served Triplett Church in Mooresville, Shirley tried to get me to crochet, saying that it will help to release the stress. Ha! All I could crochet was wads or tight balls of yarn. It made me even more tense. I have come to understand that we like to Stitch ‘N Bitch… stitch ‘n Lamatate (from Lamatations) when things don’t go exactly our way.
What ended my sculpting endeavor years ago was, after several months of working to get this statue perfect (which was really two statues that had to be put together after the finished resin product was produced), I went to pick up the statutes from the casting company in Sophia only to find that they had broken my original statue, and the finished product was so poorly done (big seams where the mold didn’t fit correctly, and pieces chipped away) that I could not accept them. I want to tell you I was in a “Stitch ‘N Lamatate” mood. All the ordinands would not receive this gift – a gift they knew others had received. I was disappointed for them. I was embarrassed that I let them down. I was MAD at this company for taking so little care of my product.
I remembered, after completing my first original, making an appointment with the person in charge of this at Cokesbury in Nashville. He set up the appointment and we made the ten-hour trip to Nashville, spent the night, and went to meet with him the next day. This man, I can’t remember his name, didn’t have the common courtesy to allow me to come up to his office and sit down and discuss this matter. No, he met me in the lobby and told me that I needed to sent this to China. I had ten hours all the way back to Asheboro to Stitch ‘N Lamatate.
When I saw this title I laughed. But the title really made me ask myself the question: “Are you ready for this again? The disappointment? The failure? Or will you be smarter this time and seek out people (professionals) who can give you advice on how to make it through the maze of stitches.”
My advice is, if your stitches are worthwhile, keep on stitching because they will bring encouragement to someone. Keep on bitching too. This helps you to express those negative feelings – get them out – and brings a release of that stress. Find someone who will listen to your complaints and keep them in Vegas. God has always been a good listener when someone wanted to bitch – look at the Psalms. God is big enough to hear that word and know that it is one of his children complaining about the unfairness of life. And guess what – He already knows, will listen to you day and night, and bring you peace – if you will listen.
Dear Lord, I gripe and complain and even lamatate at times. Help me through those times and give me peace in and through Jesus. Amen.
Grace and Peace
PS: Any of you who have one of my statues (the Ivory colored ones) would you post a picture or two to share with all our Facebook friends? I would like for them to know I really have done this????