So Will I



My radio alarm broke through my sleep and I was coaxed from the cosmos of rest, with a song: So will I.  The simple melody began to gain my attention and then in the hearing of my ears came the word creation


“God of creation, there at the start, before the beginning of time… no point of reference, You fleshed out the wonder of light…”


I am captivated.


“and as You speak, a hundred billion galaxies are born, in the vapor of Your breath the planets form…”


I have been praying and preparing for a made. Creative Gathering  this April with the women of Lighthouse Christian Church , collecting my thoughts for the opening portion, that talks about how we are all creative. As I keep listening, my heart is stirred with the picture painted about God’s creation. Yet in His love for me,  I am created in His Image and given this gift of creativity. How can I not couple it with my faith and the Gospel of Christ to speak life into peoples lives? This is what we do at a made. Creative Gathering. We connect faith with the creative process for deeper understanding of our Creator.

And believe it or not, it is all encompassed in this song in an instant for me. 


“I can see Your heart in everything You say, every painted sky the canvas of Your Grace…”


So powerfully crafted are these words, that my chest tightens and my breathing begins to labor.


My eyes well with tears of awe.


I can hardly articulate it now in hindsight. What I can say, is that I  entered my day completely different than the day before. 


“where a 100 billion failures disappear, where You lost your life so I might find it here…If You left the grave behind You, so will I”


By the end of the song, with my tear streaked face and forgiven battle scars, I make my way to the shower.


“You’re the One who never leaves the one behind.”

songwriters: Joel Houston / Benjamin Hastings / Michael Fatkin 


My response,  So. will. I.

Please listen HERE. You won’t be the same.

Full Lyrics HERE

P.S. Women of Lighthouse get ready for a day I pray will leave you changed.

Turning 50 and Beauty From Ashes



Isaiah 61:3 (NIV)

The Year of the Lord’s Favor

    and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.

How come this verse hasn’t captivated me before like it did this morning? I have come back to it several times in continuous contemplation. I have been ruminating on this one. Maybe it’s because I turned 50 this year and I now have a multifaceted headdress of tresses the color of ashes. Maybe it is that I understand the feeling of gladness after mourning. Perhaps it has to do with knowing the spirit of despair and receiving grace when I didn’t’ deserve it, only to bubble with the joy as I look backwards through my life. But more than that, it is the growth and strength which rise up from the ashes of life-living it’s when you stay in the game long enough to see the beauty that only God can bring forth through over time. I look at every year from now on as the Year of the Lord’s Favor- yup, you know it- that I get another year is remarkable. I hope someday I will be considered a mighty oak of righteousness, a planting of the Lord and a woman who displays his splendor. Maybe that is why God gave me silver hair.

My fellow sojourner, and sisters in the faith, may this be the year of the Lord’s Favor in your life and let the treasure of your silver hair(if you don’t have it, don’t worry it will come) reflect the splendor and righteousness that only comes from the blessings  of our Heavenly Father! Amen.

Question: Is your Unremarkable Life Uncommonly Beautiful?



This question is taken from the if:equip Bible Study called Reflections of God: The Theology of Beauty. Please join me in this study you won’t be sorry!

My life? Yes it is.

This is my answer to a question from week 3 day 2.

From a young age I have loved the common, old, tattered, torn-bits and pieces of life. Things in nature that are washed and worn away with water and sunlight, fading gray with time. I was never happier than when discovering a trunk in the attic full of old photos and yesteryear lace. I love the musty smell of time and the colors of age, umber and chalky teal, that patina metal and the glittery treasures from simpler days. I loved them because they lived a life, to everyone else they were things to be carted off and discarded but to me they had a story to unravel and listen to.

I liken this to my own life. Glittery treasure just needing a good polish-not too much so that the patina is removed-but just enough to bring to light the deep beauty that lies beneath.  My life isn’t extraordinary, I haven’t saved the world or invented some thing remarkable.  I have not changed the course of history or won any nobel prize.

However, God continues, in the quiet of my heart, to showcase me as His Masterpiece. Now, why is that? And even though I wear a crown of  soft gray and the lines of crows feet creep from the edges of my blue eyes. Despite the birth wrung tummy and less youthful silhouette I can still say this of Him,

“…But You(Lord) called me beautiful

when You saw my shame

and You placed me on the wall anyway.”~  listen here to this song by Nicole Nordeman~ Song, Anyway  SO Good!

This is what El Roi, the God who sees all things, does. He takes everyday lives and makes them extraordinary. This is truth. Think about the life of Joseph-the youngest, David-the shepherd boy, Tamar-a prostitute? How about Gideon-the weakest of the lowest tribe, and Moses-a murderer, need I go on?

So what does my unremarkable life share with these uncommon heroes of the faith? Each one of these stories is about someone common doing uncommon things, about the unremarkable bringing the remarkable to light. Believe it or not, myself along with these others are all marked by the beauty of God’s redemption. Now mind you, I will probably will not save the land from famine or become King or save the lineage of the Messiah. And I most likely won’t, defeat an army with only 100 men or save an entire people from slavery.

But I am going to live as if I could.

That is the intersection of unremarkable and uncommonly beautiful. Why don’t you meet me there.

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

God sees your treasure, dear girl. Amen.


How To Be Broken & Beautiful


Photo from

This year has been one of those years. A marker year ringing with transition. We all have those years. Not to bore you with details but several things happened. I transitioned from stay-at-home-keeper-of -all -things-family to full-time teacher, suffered with a child over great loss, turned 50 and continued to care for my husband and his unusual medical condition. I was feeling broken and lonely.

But I was never alone.

Around March, in a moment of solace, I was reading Psalm 23 about the Good Shepherd. Two things stood out to me that morning. The phrase…”you make me -lie down in green pastures…” at the beginning and “surely your goodness- shall follow me all the days of my life.” So my question was, how do I do what you have put before me and continue to shine your goodness Lord?  I am dulled but my edges are sharp and raw, real. I am not holy or light or salt.  I am cracking.


I am weighted and worn.  I needed to be unearthed by the one I call Yahweh, the One who is more than enough.  

For whatever reason, my search took me to Google and the words broken and beautiful and I found Kinstugi: the Japanese Art of repair. It literally means “golden joinery”. In Japan this art form, has been used by  Potters for over 400 years to repair broken pottery.

My Potter, showed me, my answer.

In a golden, symbolic, language I understood.

We are all still broken, and will be throughout our lives, but as the Potter, the Lord mends our shards and sharp pieces, our fragmented broken places, with His golden light and love. My veins and cracks now have a beauty all their own, a testament, a story. So the Lord with intention, took my struggles and gave them glimmer, He polished and mended my raw edges because He is good.

Yes, His Goodness shall follow me all the days of my life and the joints of my story now have a golden glow.  Amen.

Here is a video with more information on the art of Kinstugi

Beauty Takes Work



From Reflections of God: The Theology of Beauty:

“Gardens are not made in singing ‘Oh, how beautiful!’ and sitting in the shade.  Even God labored for six days to create a beautiful world.”

~Rudyard Kipling

Sought after beauty:

Blackberry Brambles

A Man Named Jesus


Dirty Dishes

Tarnished Silver

Lord thank you for beauty we have to think about, beauty that is shy. That’s my favorite kind of beauty, the kind that needs to be sought after. The kind of beauty that is discovered with a bit of time and a quiet place to think .~Amen

A Student of Beauty



Whoa it has been awhile since I have written here… lots has changed in my life this past year but one thing hasn’t (I am sure many of you know where I am going with this) the constant love of our Savior! I have been reminded time and time again of His goodness to me.

While I have  had some down time this summer (I got a job as a teacher last fall-see what I mean, glorious goodness!) I have been doing a Bible study from if:equip called Reflections of God: The Theology of Beauty and it talks about the following practice of becoming a student of beauty.  It is my mission this summer and hopefully beyond, to quietly begin a practice of writing down 5 things of beauty everyday.

Today’s 5 things of beauty:

  • Happy art students
  • The color of ice tea
  • Suzanne’s white hair
  • birdsong
  • paint on my fingers

The verse seek and ye will find from Matt. 7:7  or from Jeremiah 28:13   talk about this. As a student of beauty I will begin to live and practice this into my everyday life. I want to see with eyes of the Savior. Will you join me?

Living as God’s Beloved with the Women of Elim Evangelical Free Church


photo7Living as God’s Beloved.

This was our theme for our creative gathering, with the sweet women of Elim Evangelical Free Church. What a joy-filled day! They were welcoming, excited and ready to experience God in a new and different way. The church decor was not only relaxing and inviting it was the perfect setup for what we do at made. They served up a delicious meal of hearty soups, bread and salad and the hospitality and fellowship was genuine and inclusive!

I was filled with anticipation too.

I always am.

It is such a privilege to share God’s truth with others. Sharing the word of God through the creative process can be scarey but from the photos all you can see is creative joy and fun!


As a creative and a maker of things, I marvel at what an imagination can do if given space, time and encouragement!  I love teaching (if you know me personally you would say that is an understatement) but it is true. I am always tickled when I give the same set of instructions and the same medium to work with,  to a room full of inspired women. I never tire of seeing the eyes widen in discovery or the infectious smile triggered by the spark that ignites creative inspiration.


This Creative Gathering was no exception. The Creative Team provided guided creative activities through listening and quieting exercises, watercolor play,  journaling and group discussion and a clay project. All of these activities disengaged the analytical mind allowing the language of the imagination  to form something outside of themselves. They got to see their thoughts, ideas, even their faith and gain new perspective.  All through the lense of scripture and Living as God’s Beloved. It was an amazing day!

What I also never tire of, is the connection that is made as sisters in Christ. It is wonderful to watch the creative circle grow as the Lord leads us in new directions. May the Kingdom of the Lord continue to be proclaimed and women of Elim never forget that you are fearfully and wonderfullymade.photo12

 Here are some memories from our day, enjoy!

Thanks Women of Elim! We had an amazing day with you all!

~Heather and the Creative Team at made.


Where Are You Going This Year?



Where are you going?

Do you have a map or a plan?

                                                         How will you get there?

Why are you going?

I often ask my kids these questions. Seems silly even now that they are in college. Call me an overprotective mom, but they are essential questions that equip us no matter what journey we take. Whether it is back to college or off on a new career path or into uncharted waters. The beginning of a new year seems to be a time when we reorient our compass and course correct. Which means, it is a good time to ponder these questions once again.

So, however you answer these questions this new year, I hope that you will take time to remember your extraordinary story, contemplate your value, and cultivate new ideas and a new future.  Oh and don’t forget, make space for creative expression, because often it is the language that can help you make your map and get you where you are headed.  

Here’s to creating space for personal growth, spiritual connections and deep understanding in our lives this year! Enjoy slow, deliberate, meanderings along your path, use your map and above all never lose site of why you are going on the journey. 

Wishing you a Happy New Year!

~Heather and the made. Creative Team

A Harvest of Thanksgiving



Tis’ the season to be thankful…

Fall is my favorite season of the year. I love the idea of school starting back up again, and the new school supplies. I love to put away the short sleeve shirts and pull out the warm cozy sweaters that have been hiding since spring. I love that I can add layers to warm up, rather than fighting the ability to cool off. I love the changing colors of the leaves through the season until they drop from their branches. And I love the idea of sharing openly and telling others what I am thankful for on Thanksgiving.

But why wait until Thanksgiving to recognize all that God does for you each and every day? What a privilege it is to say “thank you” to God for the many everyday blessings that come our way!

God’s word says, “Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.” Colossians 4:2

And also, “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18


As I reflect on Thanksgiving, it reminds me of the harvest season. Some synonyms for harvest are: reap, uncover, store, glean, and gather. These are very active verbs that can help describe a heart of thankfulness as a harvest. Uncover the hidden, forgotten things that we can be thankful for. Store up and remember the good that God has blessed you with. Reap the joy that is a direct result of thankfulness. Glean from the normal every day things that which is good, releasing what isn’t so. And gather the memories to be retold to your friends and family of God’s faithfulness, even through hard times.

I urge you to begin the search for the harvest that thankfulness brings. I find that it changes my outlook on life and the world in which I live. I have the privilege to see what God sees; finding the little things to be thankful for in the midst of some heavy storms of life. I recognize more of what God has done in my life when I take the time to reflect and give thanks for His personal love and care.

I am super thankful for many things. I am thankful for the made. team that provide opportunities to encounter God’s word and dwell there, understanding how God fearfully and wonderfully made us in His creative image! I encourage each of you, to participate in the next made. Creative Gathering and see what God desires to share with you, personally. This conversation with God does take time. It takes a quiet, intentional, and purposeful study of His Word.

I am also thankful for the family God has blessed me with and the gift they give to me in taking time during the month to explore my creative side. This is a true gift.

Slow and pause to reflect on today. Thank God for the colorful changing leaves falling like snowflakes in the breeze, the patchy blue sky after a grey dreary day, the small scurrying critters around the yard, or the light filtering through a stand of trees. Enjoy God’s creation during this season – take a walk, kick up leaves, breathe in the full aroma of fall ~ Enjoy your personal abundant harvest of thankfulness.

~Shauna- made. Creative Team 

Stormaggedon + made. = Rainbows?

The day was all rainbows and smiles!

The day was all smiles and rainbows!

The news all around the Puget Sound centered around Stormageddon – two powerful storms approaching the Pacific Northwest and guaranteeing rain and wind that would come to close to hurricane strength.  Warnings to stock up on food and water, candles, fresh batteries for flashlights were featured on all newscasts.  This would be a storm for the books, one that would rival or be greater than the Columbus Day storm of 1962.

And of course, the brunt of the storm was to hit October 15, the same day as our made Gathering.  As schools and colleges cancelled events, the made team prayerfully consider cancelling.  But it was decided to move forward with our Gathering that had been planned for months, with a contingency plan in place should the storm become too great forcing us to end early.

Just as the impending storm had the ability to cause distraction from normal activities, so can the circumstances of our life.  We can easily become so over scheduled and overwhelmed that we go into high gear to prepare and fix and control whatever may come into our lives.

When the disciples were in the midst of a busy season of ministry Jesus told them to come away with Him to a solitary place.  Had I been a disciple my response to His invitation would have been, “wait, I will come but first I need to – fill in the blank – then I will take time away with you.”  And yet, Jesus calls his Beloved daughters to stop now and come.  He knows that even in the midst of busy seasons of life, what we need most is to come away to a solitary place.

And that is what our made Gatherings are intended to be – an opportunity to come away to a solitary place – to step out of the storms of life and enter into a place of peace, community, creativity and time with our Creator. On this day, despite the promised storms, we gathered together to reflect on what it means to live as God’s Beloved.  We entered into creative spaces as a response to God’s invitation; we journaled our way through scripture; we were fed and shared life and laughter.  Though it was rainy and windy outside, inside we enjoyed a precious time of renewal and refreshment.

We ended the day with an amazing reminder of our Creator’s love for us with a beautiful rainbow over Puget Sound. Stormegeddon never came, it fizzled out – but the rainbow was a reminder that God’s promises stand forever.

Perhaps you were unable to join us, but the good news is that Jesus’ invitation is an open one.  At anytime, despite the busyness and storms of life, He invites and welcome you, His Beloved, to come away to a solitary place with Him.  We look forward to seeing you at our next made Gathering, date TBD.

~Cindy Waple-Creative Team Member