Sunday, November 17, 2013

Solutions and such...

My sweet friends.

It's been a long while since we had a bit of a heart to heart chat.  I had some things sloshing around in my brain as I drifted off to sleep last night, and thought I'd process them out here, with you.  That always seems to help.

When I think back to the day I wrote this in May of 2010, I had a picture in my mind of what our mission field was going to look like.  We felt a calling and we thought we understood the direction it was going to take us.  Get this... we didn't realize that we thought this at the time... but I'm pretty sure we thought it was going to be a tidy mission and a tidy journey.  We saw a tidy calling full of grateful, hungry, tidy people, and their tidy stories in our minds-eye.  We didn't picture broken people with broken, messy stories.  We didn't picture our hearts struggling to understand their choices, yet feeling burdened to sling our arms over their shoulders and say, "We're here for you.  You're not in this alone."  We didn't picture that the messy brokenness would touch us.  We never visualized their mess overlapping and getting into our business, changing our plans and making us grapple with so many emotions along the way.  We couldn't have imagined the crushing weight bending our knees and forcing our eyes heavenward as desperation drove us to beg for strength and wisdom so we could help.

When we first felt called to do life differently, one thing we really never imagined was not having the ability to change things for others.  Sure, we knew we were powerless without Christ working through us. We had the head-knowledge but we didn't know it.  Not deep, within our bones, so aware of our inability to do anything in our own power.  The past few years have shown us, more than anything else, that we are not equipped to deal, fix, help, or reach out and make one bit of difference in our own power.  The past few years have shown us that God doesn't call people who have it all together to jump into the lives of those who don't, and show them how it's done.  He calls the broken, messy and powerless to jump in, wrap their weak and shaky arms around the hurting and say, "With God leading us, we'll walk out of this hole together."  He equips us, because He called us and He points the way out with the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

I always thought I'd be able to blog about the many ways God has directed and written our story.  I never counted on the private journeys or the personal stories of loved ones that can't be shared here.  More and more Adrain and I are being shown reasons why we were never allowed to move here or there... do this or that.  We can see God's finger weaving the threads of our story together in ways we would have never imagined.  We have been placed in a unique place to do a unique job and it baffles us yet seems so clear at the same time.  We can't understand, yet it makes perfect sense.  All I know is, we are being molded and shaped and our story is far from over.

The holiday season is nearly upon us and it often throws family, friends and loved ones into our path in intense ways.  If you don't know why you're where you are, or why you have been given such messy stories all around you, or how you fit... I hope that you can somehow be encouraged that you are exactly where God wants you to be, this very day.  Even if you're in a season of waiting, you're uniquely placed right there in that waiting room because you are the one He wants in that space.  (Oh don't you love that?!  I don't know about you but I mostly feel forgotten when I'm sitting in the waiting room. Not so!)  I love the following encouragement from Ephesians and I especially love the way The Message translation says it;     

Ephesians 2:10The Message (MSG)

7-10 "Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing."

Okay, so now that we've talked about what's on my heart... I am getting ready for Thanksgiving and the transition into Christmas.  (I will be talking about my heart on the matter soon but for now I thought I'd mix a bit of light-hearted home decor into this post.)  Y'all know I have an eight foot-long table in my kitchen right?  (I have this super long table, because I should have been born a little old Italian grandmother who pinches people and says things like, "You're too skinny, you need to eat!" and then ladles heaping portions of yummy goodness onto their plates. I'm just saying.) Anyway, I have a thing for white candles.  They are classic and timeless and work in almost every season.  I wanted a four foot long tray narrow enough to not take up a ton of space on the table top, yet able to hold a long mass of white candles from now until spring.  Well I couldn't find one.

So I made one.  It's rather rough "construction" but it works perfectly for what I needed.  Perhaps we'll just call it "rustic."  Yeah.  That works.

I bought a long four foot board from Lowe's.  It was the perfect width.  I purchased three long strips of wood, also four foot long.  I nailed two of them to the sides and then cut the third one to fit into the end spaces.  Then I painted the whole thing a creamy "Navajo white" color (sherwin williams) and lined it with various sized candles that I've been purchasing over the past many months, from my grocery store.  (I used to buy one each time I did my big grocery shop.)  Once dry, I used self adhesive felt pads on the underside to protect my table top.  Though I probably didn't need to bother with that since there is permanent marker residue all over the end of it from a certain child working on a science project, who shall remain nameless (he knows who he is).

So there you have it.  A simple candle solution that will be perfect all through the holiday season! 

P.S. This is the last batch of holiday dish towels and ball jar dish towels that I'll be making before my shop closes, so it's a perfect time to snag a few if you need gift ideas!  Go here to shop


  1. Thank you so much Sasha for sharing these words here today. You are the third person in a matter of days of whom I have read their blog post and felt a direct answer to prayer. It is so powerful how God uses the words of others whom you may not know personally to speak to the deep down recesses of your soul. In each of the writings that I have been led to read over these past several days, there has been a link to the sparrow (which has a personal connection to me.) As your words spoke volumes to me from our Father in heaven, I couldn't help but cry as I saw the "sparrow" sign that you have in your kitchen. I want to personally thank you for allowing God to speak through your words. You are gifted in so many ways and I truly appreciate you allowing God to use those gifts and talents to shine his light to many, many people including me. May God continue to guide you and bless you as you walk in trust and faith on your journey with him.

  2. The miracles and gifts that are bestowed in the waiting. Sometimes so sacred you can't even begin to share. I feel like we are in very similar spots in life. Thank you for sharing your heart.

  3. Your thoughts and table are lovely!!!!

  4. Most always! Love your kind heart!

  5. I love the posts that share your heart. I'm in the waiting room. I feel stuck and forgotton and cranky and envious of others' success and blessings. Thanks for the reminder that there is a plan and a purpose for this waiting.
    candle tray is perfectly lovely.

  6. my thoughts exactly.
    we are called to join our lives with others....and it's usually always messy at some point.
    broken people loving broken people.
    God is the redeemer and fixer of our broken souls....our job is to love well.
    ministry is so much more enjoyable when we aren't trying to take on the weight and responsibility of changing people.

    i'm sure the people in your life feel so thankful for you.

    love those candles. need to buy a ton just like them but i can't find them cheap anywhere. maybe ikea?

  7. Hello, I'm very new to your blog but I have enjoyed what I have read. I also purchased one of your butcher cow tea towels for my son, love it! Are you closing your etsy shop for good? Or just for the winter season? I hate to see it go. Also, I love your "sparrow" print in your dining room, it's one of my very favorite songs, will you share where you got this or did you make it?
    Thank you so much, Elizabeth

  8. thanks for sharing your heart as always and for this post.
    I feel like we've gone through similar things in a way...this post is extremely timely and has brought tears and encouragment!
    Bless you sister in Christ!


  9. Happy you are seeing God working and understanding more of the "whys." Love your rustic box and candles! It is beautiful with just candles but it will look great filled with all kinds of things for every occasion. :)

  10. Thank you for sharing this today! Over the weekend, my husband (who has been frustrated at the almost glacially-slow pace of his job search) found out information about one job, in particular, that he had felt was a lock - information that clearly indicated that him getting that job would have turned out poorly. In moments like that, I am thankful that God has more wisdom and sight than we do, to keep us where we are until a genuinely-better place is ready.

  11. Beautiful thoughts from your heart. And, I've never thought about using white candles. They are so lovely and so clean looking. Blessings to you!

  12. hello sweet girl. oh how i have missed you and everyone really! i was woke up at 4:30 this morning and thought it the perfect time to come for a visit. as always i love your heart to hearts. always so much going on right?:) oh how i hear what you are saying. TOTES as grace would say. short for totally:) i love your merry and bright towels! love the you on tuesday;)...xo

  13. Hi Sasha - It's been a long time - First - Happy Anniversary and Second - about 2009 we thought God was calling us on a journey for a totally different reason that it was - and, well - what we thought and what He planned turned out so differently - I've learned a lot about standing - a lot about prayer journeys - and have so grown a heart for prodigals. When I stop by - and I have - and see where your dream journey has taken you - I am over-joyed for you. So happy to see your gift spilling out - with your art and your words. Great Journey, Lady! You are doing so beautiful! I know you will have a beautiful Thanksgiving - wishing you one where you dance, too!