Week Nineteen…Transformation and Perseverance

When I look at a spool of wire I see an endless possibility of things that could be made with a few swirls, loops, coils, and weaves.  What do you see?  Most people would see different things and it would likely depend upon your life experiences.  When I make my jewelry there is a transformation that happens.

It starts out looking like this…

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22 gauge and 28 gauge round copper wire

And then with the help of a tutorial or two and a few beads, it looks like this…

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Wrapped Up Heart Pendant from Week Six

That is pretty cool.  Before I started making wire jewelry, I would look at copper wire and think it was something to be used for plumbing and electrical things or recycled.  It certainly wasn’t something I ever thought I would be using in my crafts, let alone become my favorite thing to create with.

While that is interesting you may be wondering what it has to do with my jewelry challenge and my project of this week…I should say two weeks.  Well, while creating the Love’s Embrace Ring (tutorial by Perri Jackson, Shaktipaj Designs) which I did start two weeks ago, there has been a transformation going on inside of myself.

In the Bible it talks about sufferings producing perseverance, perseverance producing character, and character producing hope.  I have seen this transformation happening inside myself when I look back at the process of creating this ring.  I started out with excitement, but it quickly became suffering because it was a completely new technique and a new way of putting a ring together.  I don’t know about you, but I like things to be comfortable and predictable…this tutorial was outside of that comfort zone and it made me really not want to do it.  (Now I don’t think this suffering was hard in the big scope of life, as my mother in law says “Some people have real problems”, but at the time this felt like suffering.)

Now I would love to say that I just pulled it all together, put on my big girl panties and whipped out the ring in a hurry, but we all know that two weeks isn’t whipping something out in a hurry. 🙂  I saw some definite character flaws revealed as I tried to work on this ring.  I was amazed that even thought I am thirty-four my behavior resembled that of a seven year old that has to clean her room or a three year old who has to eat two more bites of her dinner…the fit throwing and the putting off of the inevitable.  Now I should clarify that I didn’t throw any fits on the outside…that might make my husband feel the need to take me to a doctor for help.  It was more of a bad attitude on the inside all the while procrastinating and not working on the project until the last minute.  Sigh, I guess we all have days like that…I would just like to be the grown-up I imagine myself to be.

Well onto the transformation part… 🙂

Here is the part of the ring that I accomplished the first week…

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Beginnings of the Love’s Embrace Ring

Not a bad beginning, but it took me a week to work through the tutorial and finish this much. (Yes, there is a lot more to it than I mentioned, but that is the short version.)  Now, how do I know I could do it faster?  Well, this week when I went to do the second part which looks just like the picture above it took me about 30 minutes.  Boy did I feel silly…like a three year old who has been sitting there for three hours miserable because she had to eat two more bits of her dinner before she could get down and she is stubborn enough not to take them…I could have saved myself a lot of emotional drama, but sometimes I need to learn the hard way.

The lesson I learned is that sometimes it is better to just do something than worry about whether you can do it because it will save a lot of time and emotional drama.  And even if I mess up, I can usually recover pretty well or I can start over using the new lesson I learned by messing up.

In my post last week I mentioned that I ordered half round copper wire to finish out the band of my ring. The tutorial called for half round copper wire, but I didn’t have any and thought I could just weave the band and it would be stable enough.  I had never worked with half round copper wire and found it to be a funny wire at first.  For those of you who don’t know, half round wire is round on one side and flat on the other.  It definitely turned out to be the right choice to add stability to my ring band and I can see a lot of potential uses for it in future projects.

Here is a picture of the two 24 gauge wires and one 26 gauge wire that made up the band before I added the half round wire…

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Ring band before the half round wire was added

Here are some pictures of the finished ring…

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Completed Love’s Embrace Ring
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Completed Love’s Embrace Ring
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Completed Love’s Embrace Ring

I am so glad that I persevered through this project and am thankful that I have completed nineteen weeks in this challenge.  One of the reasons I wanted to do this challenge is to work on my ability to persevere on hard tasks and it is happening with the Lord’s help.

How do you respond to the hard things (whether big or small) that you have to deal with or do?  I have found the way I respond to the little “hard” things is often how I will respond to the big things that are actually really hard.  Here’s hoping for another week of strengthening those perseverance muscles and building character and hope so we can respond well!

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