January 30, 2018

Scrap Sewing

I have always loved scrap quilts. I also love looking at other people's improv quilts, but I've never made one of my own. The thought of making a quilt without using my precious rotary cutter? Scary!

I have a project coming up in the spring, though, that has a strong element of scrappy improv to it. I'm really excited about this quilt and I can't wait to show it to you, so sharing only sneak peeks as I work on it is going to be tough 😊

I've been trying for years to tame my scraps, with limited success. I've had bouts of keeping up with cutting all my scraps into useable pieces as I go, but they don't usually last long. Trimming a quilt, especially, would make me abandon my plans to cut as I go. Who wants to cut up those long, long pieces from the leftover backing when they could be getting right to the binding and finishing of the quilt?

As a result, my fancy-pants scraps storage system looked like this:
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Wouldn't you be inspired to make a scrap quilt if you had that lot of wrinkled, smashed together, who knows what's in there? Yeah, me neither, which is why I just kept shoving more pieces in and rarely taking any out.

Until now! I knew that making the scrappy improv pieces for this quilt would probably take a while. I also know that I'm going to have plenty of deadlines this year, so I didn't want to leave it to the last minute and stress myself out. So one morning, while the kids I babysit played, I pulled out the iron and started taking fabric out of the bag and flattening it back out.

Then I took my scissors (eek!) and chopped the pieces into smaller pieces, ready to sew back together. I have to admit it was scary to cut without being certain the cuts were straight and smooth. But it was fun too 😊
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Then came the fun of sewing them. I'm going for the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink look. Every colour and every style of fabric is welcome in this quilt. The resulting pieces are wild and crazy!
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
I'm using my Clover mini iron so I don't have to go to the ironing board after every (tiny) seam. It works like a charm.
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
When a friend saw what I was working on, he said, "Now that looks like an old-time quilt right there" and it really does. It makes me think of the crazy quilts of the past and the quilter's philosophy of using every little piece of fabric.

This is my smallest scrap sewn in so far. The seam allowances actually overlap on the back!
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Bobbin for scale!
I'm using another fancy-pants storage system to keep the cut pieces corralled. It's not Pinterest-worthy, but it works. I have two cardboard boxes - one box for the medium sized pieces and strips and a cereal box for the smallest pieces, because they kept getting buried in the bigger box.
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
This picture was taken before I moved the smallest pieces into the cereal box.
I thought I might find the process of sewing those many, many small pieces together to be tedious, but I don't at all. I really enjoy it, actually. It's relaxing to sew without a plan, to just focus on finding a piece that fits the seam I want to sew and to watch the sewn pieces grow. It's especially good when the company is good 😊
scrap sewing | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
It's no surprise that my scraps are heavy on the blue! I'm trying hard to mix it up and have lots of other colour in there.

It's fun to revisit all of these fabrics. It's also satisfying to change them from a wrinkled mess into something useable. I keep thinking of other ways I want to use this technique when this quilt is finished, which is a good sign. Maybe someday I'll be able to keep up with the scraps!

What are your thoughts on improv? Do you embrace it or does it make you nervous? And how small is too small for you when it comes to scraps? I've always said anything smaller than 1 1/2" square was too small, but this process is making me rethink that.

January 29, 2018

Paying Attention

Devotion for the Week...

I love to read. Like, really love to read 😊 I find that when I'm reading a good book, all I want to do is sit and devour it page after page after page. It happened a couple of weeks ago as I was reading Brandon Sanderson's Oathbringer, which Aiden gave me for Christmas. Once I hit about the mid-point of the book I accomplished practically nothing for a few days because I spent every spare moment reading. I love when a book is that good!

What's not good is when I'm reading a book that good and someone starts talking to me. It takes a few seconds for me to even be aware that they're talking to me, and then it takes a little longer for me to drag myself out of the fictional world enough to be able to focus on what they're saying to me. Usually I have to get them to start over again because I completely missed the beginning of what they said. Their words were going into my ears, but my brain was too busy elsewhere to process what the words meant.

I thought of that the other day when I read Matthew 13:10-13:

 "The disciples came to him and asked, 'Why do you speak to the people in parables?'

He replied, 'Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. This is why I speak to them in parables:

'Though seeing, they do not see;
    though hearing, they do not hear or understand.'"

Jesus had just told the people the parable of the sower (more on that probably next week) and the disciples wanted to know why He didn't just teach plain and simple lessons. Why bother hiding the lessons in stories?

It's a valid question, right? If you want the people to understand, isn't it better to just tell them straight out?

But Jesus says no.

Jesus says that the people who are truly interested in what He has to say will focus on His words. They will not only hear the words, but they will also listen to them. The difference is like someone talking to me while I'm reading and someone talking to me while I'm actually paying attention to them.

Those who hear Jesus' words but who are busy thinking about how so-and-so needs to hear what He's saying, or about what they need to do tomorrow, or what needs to be done at work, or anything else that isn't what He's saying, they are not truly listening. They're hearing, but not listening and therefore not understanding. They'll never see how what He said could be applied to their lives. They'll never take His words and change their lives with it.

But those who hear His words and focus on them, who mull the story over and try to figure out what Jesus means? They're the ones who will gain knowledge from the story. They're the ones who will take that teaching, apply it to their lives and change because of it.

Of course, today we can't sit on the mountainside and listen to Jesus tell parables. But that doesn't mean there aren't opportunities to learn the lessons He taught.

When we read the Bible, are we just reading the words or are we really paying attention to them? Are we focused on them, mulling over what we're reading and thinking about how it can apply to our lives?

When we read books (or online devotions 😉) about Christian living, are we busy thinking about how other people could benefit from reading those thoughts, or are we looking for ways to use the lessons to be better Christians ourselves?

The same holds true for listening to sermons at church. Are we just marking time, letting our minds wander and waiting for the service to be over? Or are we actively listening, focusing on what we can take from what we are hearing?
Weekly devotions on Christian living | DevotedQuilter.blogspot,com
As is so often the case, this isn't a decide-once type of question. We don't decide today that we're going to focus and then never again find ourselves hearing the words without paying attention to the meaning. It's a choice we must make constantly, every time the opportunity to learn is presented to us.

If you ask me, Jesus' words are worth listening to.

January 24, 2018

Employee Quilts Delivered!

It's finally time to share some more of the quilts made from the blocks donated back in April! It feels so good to be able to move forward again 😊

There were 10 employees at the home and 8 of them were able to get together for lunch this past weekend to receive their quilts. One lady has moved out of the province, so her quilt has been mailed to her. The other lady who couldn't make it had to work so one of the ladies at lunch offered to take her quilt to her.

For once, my laundry basket was empty and it made the perfect carrier for the 9 quilts.
Here they are with their quilts 😊
And here are the quilts!
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Charity quilts | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
So, with those quilts now delivered, it's time to finish the quilts for the first responders. I have 18 of those 31 quilts finished, so it really feels like we're on the home stretch here.

Again, thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who has contributed to this project. You will never know how much I have appreciated it!

January 22, 2018

Two Sources

Devotion for the Week...

When Nathan was little, it seemed like he talked non-stop, especially when he was with me. I can remember telling him now and then that my ears needed a break because I wanted quiet so I could just think for a moment. Once we were driving down the road and I convinced him he should try to see how long he could go without talking. He didn't even last 20 seconds! To be honest, it was overwhelming at times. He's almost 10 now and still talks a lot, but not quite that much, thankfully.

Most people don't talk so much that it's overwhelming for the people around them, but we do all talk many times throughout the day. We talk to family members, friends, neighbours, store employees, co-workers, doctors, waitresses and more. We talk about the weather, our kids, our work, our hobbies, politics, the news and much more.

Most of the time, our conversations are fine, but sometimes the things we say are not quite so fine. We may say things out of anger, irritation or impatience that are the exact opposite of fine. Things that we are horrified to hear come out of our own mouths. This is nothing new, of course. James wrote, "Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check" (James 3:2).

James also wrote, "With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water" (James 3:9-12).

This should not be. And yet it is. Why?

I read this portion of Matthew recently and I think it can shed some light on why.

"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned" (Matthew 12:33-37).

Jesus was talking to the Pharisees, who were accusing Him of using Satan's power to cast out demons. He didn't have much time for the religious leaders of His day, here calling them evil and a brood of vipers, while at other times He called them hypocrites and whitewashed tombs (see Matthew 23).

What interested me in these verses was the idea of our words as fruit, rooted in our hearts. You see, as Christians, we have the Holy Spirit indwelling us, which should result in all of our words being good fruit, born from the goodness in our hearts.

But as I've said, that's not always the case.

So what's up? Well, unfortunately, our sinful human nature is sitting right there beside the Holy Spirit, trying and trying to force its way back out into the open. When we are angry, irritated or impatient, we sometimes tap into that as the source of our words, rather than the Holy Spirit.

When we allow the Holy Spirit to be the source of our words, the fruit is good. But when we allow our sinful nature to be the source, the fruit is not good.
Weekly devotions on Christian living | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
This is one reason why stopping to think before we speak is such a good idea. If we're not spewing words in the heat of the moment, we can pay attention to where our words are coming from. What source are we tapping into? If it's not coming from the Holy Spirit, it's not something we should be saying.

January 21, 2018

Nathan's Monster

On Friday, Vera of Negligent Style shared some monster softies she made, along with the link to the tutorial she used. As soon as I saw them, I knew Nathan would love to have a monster of his own. He has a big teddy bear that he still loves to sleep with, so a big softie would be a hit. Plus, he has been asking me to let him sew something for a while, so this would be the perfect opportunity. I filed it away in the "someday soon" file.

Then, when he was going to bed that same night, he managed to put his foot through his pajamas. He was quite upset because they were new (from Christmas) and he really liked them. Since we needed something for the arms and legs of the monster anyway, I told him we could make something out of the ruined pajama pants and suddenly my Saturday became monster making day 😊

I think I have a very happy boy.
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
The grey fleece we used for the body is one I've had lying around for years. Nathan picked all of the other fabrics himself. He also did most of the work himself, with assistance/guidance from me. He cut apart the ruined pajamas.
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
 Pinned pieces.
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
 Did all of the sewing himself, with my machine set almost all the way to "turtle" speed...
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
and with a little extra help from my Quilter's Planner 😊
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
He also made all the decisions. Arms or no arms? One eye or two? Button or fabric for the pupil of the eye?

Plus, he drew the pieces for the eye and drew the mouth. This is definitely HIS monster.
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
He had a blast stuffing him and was amazed by how much stuffing it took to fill him up.
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
I think he's rather proud of himself 😊
Nathan's monster softie | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

January 16, 2018

Divided Quilt Pattern Release

I am pleased to release my Divided quilt pattern today! It is made with one simple, machine appliqued, orange peel block and finishes at 52" x 70", perfect for snuggling on the couch with a good book or movie.

This design was inspired by the shirt a man wore to church one Sunday morning, which proves that quilting inspiration really is everywhere!
Divided Quilt Pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
I had a lot of fun making this quilt, even though I made it in only 9 days while also working full time. The power of deadlines, lol 😊 I made it with Me + You fabrics from their Indah batiks and solids and I really love the feel of the fabrics. Plus, since it's lightly quilted (that deadline was looming!), it stayed super soft and drapey.
Divided quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

Divided quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

Divided quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Divided was first published in Quilty magazine and the editors wanted to see it with different colours for the stripe, so I thought I'd share them here too. I have to admit, I wasn't sold on the black when that was what they chose. I thought it looked a little bland without the pop of a bright colour in the stripe. In the end, though, I really love the elegant look of the black 😊
Divided quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

Divided quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

Divided quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com

You can get your copy of Divided in my Payhip shop or my Etsy shop.

Tell me, what colours would you use for the quilt? Would you go with a bright, contrasting, pop of colour for the stripe?

Get your copy of Divided

January 15, 2018

Piled Up

Devotion for the Week...

This time of year in Newfoundland usually requires a lot of snow clearing. We shovel our driveway rather than using a snowblower and the sides of the driveway can really pile up high if we get a lot of snow. Years ago, Paul taught me that it's important to throw the snow as far as you can at the start of the winter, rather than just dumping it at the side of the driveway, because if you throw it then the pile starts farther back, giving you more room for the snow that will come later in the year. Even with that, though, there are years when by spring everyone is saying "there's nowhere to put more snow!"

Sometimes we've been blessed by a snowplow driver who would take the snow at one side of our driveway and push it farther into our yard, giving us more room. What a huge difference that makes!

I remember being out one day, though, when a plow drove by as I was shoveling. The driver stopped and said he would help, but there was no where even for him to put the snow. The pile was already so big, and had been pushed back so many times, the plow just wouldn't be able to push it back any farther.

Now that's a lot of snow!

We were out shoveling a few days ago and Zach was just dumping the snow by the side of the driveway, so I told him to throw it back and explained why. After, I kept thinking about the pile of snow and how it's harder to deal with as it gets bigger. It made me think of people who think their pile of sin is too big for God to deal with.

Thankfully, God is more powerful than I am, and even more powerful than a snowplow. There is no pile of sin so big He can't remove it. Paul wrote, "But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 5:20,21).

No matter how big the pile of sin in a person's life, the power of God's grace will always be enough to remove it!
Weekly devotions on Christian living | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Those who don't yet know Jesus as Savior may think their sin is too big for God to deal with, especially if they have done a lot of wrong in their lives. It is wonderful to be able to say that, no matter what you have done in the past, when you come to God asking for forgiveness, He gladly removes that whole pile of sin. Not only that, but all of heaven celebrates it! Luke 15:10 says, "In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

But it's not only those who aren't believers who think their sin is too big for God. Sometimes believers do something that is so wrong they feel like they can't ever be forgiven for it. Thankfully, that isn't true. No matter what we do, God is always willing to forgive us when we ask Him to. 1 John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."

He will purify us from all unrighteousness. No matter what the sin is, or how much the sin has piled up, He will forgive us and purify us.

Isn't that a wonderful thought?

January 08, 2018

The Something for Everyone Pattern Bundle

Today is our first day back to work after having two weeks off for the holidays. I haven't at all been looking forward to needing to set the alarm again, so I decided to make this week a lot more fun by creating a new pattern bundle.

Introducing the Something for Everyone pattern bundle!
Something for Everyone quilt pattern bundle | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
This pattern bundle includes 5 of my favourite patterns: Love Birds, Mix it Up!, Flower Box, Rainbow Ripple and Friendship Galaxy. Friendship Galaxy includes 4 sizes/layouts for a total of 9 possible quilts!

The bundle is available this week only (through Thursday) for the introductory price of only $25 😊

With this bundle you'll have patterns for mini quits (4!), baby quilts, a throw and a full size bed quilt. Two patterns use machine applique, while all the others are made with traditional piecing. Having 9 different patterns means you can spend less time browsing online for the perfect pattern and more time making. And that means you'll get to make more quilts!

Get your copy of the Something for Everyone pattern bundle


Which one will you make first?



January 07, 2018

Reflection

Devotion for the Week...

One day last week we went out of town for the day and drove back home after dark. It was a beautiful, clear night and we drove for hours in the dark, mostly with nothing but trees on either side of the road.

The moon was two days past full, huge in the sky and incredibly bright. Hills far off in the distance, that would normally be hidden by the darkness, were clearly outlined against the brightness in the sky. The moonlight illuminated clearings and made trees cast shadows across frozen ponds.

As we drove I couldn't help but be amazed at the fact that the moon produces no light. There we were, driving through a night much brighter than normal, with the moon glowing in the sky, and yet the moon cannot produce light at all.

All that light? It was actually coming from the sun.

Obviously, I knew this already, just like you do. But as I looked at the shadows cast by the trees, it seemed amazing that all the moon can do is reflect the light from another source. And that made me think of us.

Jesus said, "You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:14-16).

You are the light of the world. How is that possible? How can we possibly be the light of the world when we are simply human, the same as all the people around us?

The answer lies in something else Jesus said. "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, 'I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life'" (John 8:12).

Jesus is the light of the world. It is His light that illuminates the darkness.

We are like the moon. We can't produce light on our own, but we can reflect the light that comes from another source, and so we reflect the light of Jesus into the world around us.

This is no small thing! Jesus is not here, physically, to shine light into this dark world of sin, but because we can reflect His light, there is light in the darkness.  When surrounded by darkness, light draws attention.
Weekly devotions on Christian living | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
In the same way, when surrounded by sin, Christians draw attention. Our task then is to make it plain that the light doesn't come from us. When we point others towards Jesus, the source of our light, then we make it possible for them to move out of darkness too.

And the more of us reflecting His light, the brighter the light will be in the world.

January 05, 2018

Scraps Squared in Make Modern

Edited March 9, 2018 - This pattern is now available for individual sale through my Payhip and Etsy shops. To celebrate the pattern release, get it for 25% off until March 20th.

I love the days when I get to share secret sewing projects! My Scraps Squared quilt is in the latest issue of Make Modern magazine (issue 20), which is now available 😊
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
I had been making scrappy, colour coordinated 4 patch blocks for years as my leaders and enders project. I have a few hundred of them, but I wasn't quite sure what to do with them, lol. So, as part of the 30 Quilt Designs challenge in early 2017, I designed a quilt around those 4 patch blocks.
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
I have always loved bright colours against solid black, but the design seemed like it needed a little something more, so I added some medium grey and changed those blocks to feature 2 1/2" squares (I've been cutting those from my scraps for a while, so I have a nice collection of them, too).
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
With my 4 patches already made and the 2 1/2" squares already cut, the quilt top came together really quickly. If you want to make this one, and you're not in a hurry, I'd definitely recommend making the 4 patches as leaders and enders. It makes sewing all of them feel painless and then the rest of the top is a breeze.

I had a little hiccup with the quilting design I chose, which you can read about here. I ended up loving this square meander, though, so it all worked well in the end 😊 I also mused about quilting this quilt in this post about imperfections.
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
I quilted the black with Aurifil 2692 and the  grey with 2610. All while I was quilting the background, I debated what to do with the 4 patches and 2 1/2" squares. I was inclined to leave them unquilted, but I wasn't sure. I polled IG and FB, where the vote was evenly split between quilting them and leaving them as they were, so I took the easy way out and left them. I really do love how they pop against the heavily quilted background!
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
The backing is a gorgeous Northcott print, from their Sandscapes line. Seriously, I wish I had this is every colour available!
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Scraps Squared Quilt | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Issue 20 of Make Modern is available now. Click here to get your copy 😊 Use the coupon code MM20for6 to get the issue for $6 AUD (the coupon code is good until January 7th).

If you make Scraps Squared, I'd love to see it, so be sure to tag me on IG (@devotedquilter) or on FB (@devotedquilterdesigns).

I still have hundreds of 4 patch blocks, and I'm curious to see how different this design would look with a different background, so I'm considering making another version soon. I just have to decide what colours to use for the background, lol. I've thought about white and a light grey, two shades of blue, two shades of green, grey and teal...I just can't make up my mind! What background colours would you suggest I try?

I have two more quilts scheduled to be in Make Modern in 2018, and both of them are designs from the same 30 Quilt Designs challenge. There are several more I want to make from that challenge, and some still from the first challenge in 2016 too. I know one thing for sure - I'm never going to be bored!


**Note - this post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click the link and then make a purchase I may receive a small commission. This does not affect the price you pay.

January 01, 2018

Monuments

Devotion for the Week...

Happy New Year!

This time of year certainly encourages looking back, doesn't it? Not only is the year coming to a close, but also the decorations and traditions of the Christmas season evoke remembrances of years gone by.

I find it happens especially when we decorate our Christmas tree. Since I make special ornaments for the boys each year (see this year's ornaments here), there are a lot of weird things on our tree. Nathan especially, will ask things like, "Why did Zach get a spider ornament?" Because he was really into insects that year. "Why is my first ornament a worm in an apple?" Because you were the squirmiest worm of a baby I have ever seen. And, "Why does Aiden have a black ship?" Because he was fascinated by pirates that year.

It's fun to look back and remember what the boys were like when they were smaller. The ornaments serve as monuments, to help keep those memories in our minds so we don't forget the things they were so fascinated by. I love that every year, as we decorate the tree, we go over the reason for each of the ornaments again.

Did you know God gave the Isrealites instructions for building a monument to help them remember something? It's recorded in Joshua, chapter 4. The Isrealites were entering the Promised Land and the first thing they had to do was cross the Jordan river. God told Joshua to send the priests into the river first, carrying the ark of the covenant, and when the priests were in the river, God stopped the flow of water so the whole nation could walk across on dry ground.

"When the whole nation had finished crossing the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, 'Choose twelve men from among the people, one from each tribe, and tell them to take up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan, from right where the priests are standing, and carry them over with you and put them down at the place where you stay tonight.'" (Joshua 4:1-3).

Why?

"In the future, when your children ask you, ‘What do these stones mean?’ tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever" (vv 6,7).

God knew that they would need reminders of the things He had done for them so He encouraged the Isrealites to make one, a very obvious and hard to miss physical reminder. It was one that would make people ask questions, giving the Isrealites a chance to tell the story again, which would serve both to let others know what had happened and to remind those who had been there.

Our memories aren't any better than those of the Isrealites. As time passes, it's not unusual for us to forget what God has done for us. Even the things that were spectacular when they happened can slip our minds at times.

It's a great idea, then, to make ourselves physical reminders of what He has done for us. While we probably aren't going to pile up big boulders on our front lawns, there are lots of ways we can link an object to memories.
Weekly devotions on Christian living | DevotedQuilter.blogspot.com
Some ideas include a piece of jewelry with a special stone or symbol; a piece of wall art featuring a favourite Bible verse; a photograph of a place or a person; a quilt, a tattoo, a special plate or a specific recipe, a stuffed animal...the list could go on and on.

Whatever will make you think of what God has done for you in the past will work. It's even better if it will also sometimes cause other people to ask "Does this have special meaning?"

God has done so much for us. Monuments help us remember.
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