Cleaning out my office closet last week, I found four Hobby Lobby sacks with the same contents: fabric, embroidery thread, needles, and a hoop.  Each represents a one-of-a-kind, meaningful wedding gift that never materialized. 

Why? I was afraid to start them! 

You see, I’ve tried my hand at embroidery before, and those Pinterest “Nailed it!” posts that make me laugh so hard I cry have nothing on some of the tangled messes I’ve made. 

Sometimes, though, inspired by something I’ve seen or an idea that popped into my head as I fell asleep, I get brave and drive myself to Hobby Lobby for a new batch of supplies.  Confident that I’ll follow through, I set the sack of goodies on the bench in our entry way for a while and take it on road trips in case I feel like making progress while we drive.  Sometimes, I even take the contents out and lay them on the coffee table, but I always lose my nerve.  Back in the sack the sundries go and into my office, where I’ll only see them once a day.  From there, it’s a very short trip into the closet, where inspiration goes to die. 

On the upside, I never fail at embroidery.  On the down side, I never succeed, and the wonders that could have been aren’t.

No big loss when you’re talking about embroidery.  A HUGE loss when it happens spiritually. 

“For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, but worldly grief produces death.” 2 Corinthians 7:10

Listen, family, we all make mistakes!  Sometimes, what we start well with pure motives by divine inspiration veers off course, and we find ourselves holding something altogether different than what we envisioned and God had in mind.  When this happens, the temptation is to wad up our efforts, stash them away, and stop trying to produce something God will like. 

Please don’t!  If you do, the devil wins, and your Kingdom impact dies. 

Remember, the Father is patient.  The Father is kind.  The Father forgives and forgets and knows the dust you’re made of.  He’s not surprised by your mistakes; neither does He hold them against you when you repent.  Want to produce something He’ll like?  Prove your faith in His mercy and grace by accepting His forgiveness.  Illustrate it by forgiving yourself.  Put the past behind you and move forward as He leads.

Yes, you’ll fail from time to time, but the choice to keep trying is success in itself!    

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