Coming together

4 12 2011

I love when things come together, when loose ends get tied up and things that haven’t made sense click into place.  It’s a strength that Marcus Buckingham identifies as Connectedness in his book Now, discover your strengths.  Here’s a quotation to give you the flavour –

“Sometimes I look at my bowl of cereal..and think of the people who brought it to me – the farmers in the field; the biochemists who made the pesticides; the warehouse workers at the food preparation plants; even the marketers who somehow persuaded me to buy this box of cereal and not a different one sitting next to it on the shelf. I know it sounds strange, but I give thanks to these people, and just doing that makes me feel more involved with life, more connected to things, less alone.”

That’s me!

~

Here’s a brilliant story of connectedness. 

The Ros Tapestry Project in Ireland  (www.rostapestry.com/) has taken over ten years with a few of the 15 panels yet to go. It is a local community project, with 150 volunteers, working in shifts, to create the largest modern embroidered art in Europe.  It’s not random by any means.  The tapestries, researched and designed by Ann Griffin Bernstroff, begin as large illustrations called cartoons, and are then copied in richly coloured thread in reverse, by stitchers at a wooden frame, telling the story of the Normans coming to 12th Century Ireland and the founding of New Ross in County Wexford.  If you visit the project while people are working on it, you can contribute a stitch to the tapestry.  I’m tempted!

~

What got me thinking about this theme was reading a quotation in Acts that comes from the book of Isaiah…and then, as they say, I went off on one.

So back to my source.  In Acts 13:16-41 Paul explains to the synagogue congregation in Antioch about how Jesus fits into the history of the Jewish people –

“And now we are here to bring you this Good News. The promise was made to our ancestors, and God has now fulfilled it for us, their descendants, by raising Jesus.”

But that’s not the only loose end that he ties up; he goes on to quote Isaiah 49:6 and applies it to himself and his mission – ” ‘I have made you a light to the Gentiles, to bring salvation to the farthest corners of the earth.’” 

Paul has that strong sense of connectedness, of being part of a bigger whole, of having a purpose beyond himself.  I wonder if that’s what kept him going in tough times, if somehow he could see that his stitches were contributing to the tapestry of God’s purposes.

 

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