I have a problem…I am addicted to Stones. Yes, I said it! Rocks, stones, pebbles…I love them all and could spend countless hours, searching the beaches for them. My favorite spot to rock hunt is Lake Michigan. I’m amazed how beautiful the beaches are, the waves, the sand, the rocks!
My addiction started about 5 years ago when I moved from Seattle, WA back to Michigan, dragging my husband and two children with me. Oddly enough, at the same time, Daren’s Aunt Barb moved from Ohio out to Bellingham, WA so we promised to keep an eye on her lake house near Lake Michigan. Our first trip there, Aunt Barb “showed us the ropes” and introduced us to Crinoids, which is a fossilized sea plant that washes up on the shores of Lake Michigan. They look almost like a cherrio but the perfect crinoids have a star in the center! Besides being obsessed with finding these rare little fossils, I was amazed with the stones I saw! They were so flat and smooth. I was hooked. I’d completely loose track of time scanning the beach for crinoids and perfectly shaped smooth stones.
It was on another one of these trips to the Lake House that I discovered my other passion…leather! We stopped at a craft store on our way to the beach and bought a few crafts for the kids. My daughter chose a bag of scrap leather to make things out of. That night, I took one of my beach treasures, a rock shaped like a heart, and some of Bella’s scrap leather and made my first cuff bracelet! Again, I was hooked…I didn’t know why or even what I was going to do with these stones I collected but each trip to the beach I’d bring home bags of smooth stones with big plans of making them into something. I kept buying scraps of leather, turning them into bracelets. Hundreds of bracelets, creating them was relaxing to me, it was my “me time”. I enjoy making them with encouraging quotes stamped in or scraps of scripture written on them. I’d give them away to anyone who enjoyed them.
A few weeks ago I started a bible study on my phone called Chase the Lion, by Mark Batterson. It is a study about dreaming big and being bold…something I crave to do! On the 6th day of the study it told the story of Samuel who set up a stone between two cities. He named the stone Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.” The author wrote that “In every dream journey, there are Ebenezer moments. You’ve got to celebrate those milestones by building altars. Then you’ve got to surround yourself with those life symbols so you don’t forget what God wants you to remember.”
It was at that exact moment that I realized why I’ve been collecting those stones and what I needed to do…I need to make them into Ebenezer altars and share them with others, so that they can mark their Ebenezer moments and celebrate their own milestones!
And that’s what I am dedicated to doing. Creating wearable art that reminds us to be grateful and celebrate who and where we are today. Hopefully you can find a piece here that represents your journey and the little victories that God has brought you through “Thus Far”.