I am absolutely blown away over the little (and big!) creations I've gotten to make and do since beginning this etsy shop. This three foot long wood sign is quite possibly the most wonderful sign I've had the privilege of creating. 

But let me tell you, this was hard work. And all I did was the writing! There is something about creating things... When Stacy (my wood gal) handed me this huge beauty, I was dreaming big and bright about how wonderful it was going to turn out. I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. I prepared the layout, got the format on there as best as possible, and went for it. 

Once the paint was on, there was no turning back. So I followed my layout, and as I continued on, I grew a little less than satisfied. Imagine the lettering without the arrow. A big gaping space stood between the bottom and top. It looked less than perfect. I prayed against feeling defeated and let down and wishing I could start all over again.

Ever felt like this?

That's one of the things I've learned about this little adventure of attempting to really, faithfully, in good stewardship, use and share the gifts God has given for His glory. Often I miss the latter part. 

On the other hand, because I want to pursue excellence in these areas, I sometimes find myself disappointed. I need lots and lots of grace. Here's the reality - I am not a machine. I don't always get things juuuust right. I am not perfect. So things that I make are not perfect. 

But they can be beautiful. 

You know what's really beautiful? When a man has just received news that he has cancer and sings passionately in incredible belief that God is good. When someone sees death right before her eyes and in tears proclaims her anchored hope in eternal realities. When a child quickly and freely says "I forgive you" after a mother repents for yelling in anger. When a woman grieves but not like those who have no hope after a miscarriage. When a father delights with abandon over the joy of his children.

The gospel is beautiful. 

These are only a small portion of pictures of the gospel I have seen. They and their faces grip me. But what they do more than that is lead me to wonder over and worship of my great God. He takes the broken, far from perfect things, and makes them beautiful. He redeems. 

This wood sign was redeemed with the addition of the arrow. 

It's not perfect, and I am beginning to like that. Let us look for His redemption in the big and the small of our lives. When we do, we become enamored with Jesus and as a by-product, beautifully display the gospel.