The Tapestry of Life

By - December 11th 2014.

Each thread in a tapestry is important. Some stand out right away. It may even seem that the other threads are unnecessary. But take just one away and the whole tapestry changes.

It’s the same with life. Each of us has an important part to play. Just because your part, your thread, doesn’t seem to stand out like it once did doesn’t mean it isn’t of great worth.

Have you ever considered the following?

1. Some threads are bold and dynamic. Perhaps you’re an extrovert and even now brighten up a room whenever you enter. You may wear the label “Life of the Party”.

2. Perhaps you’re warm and caring. If you were a colour, you would be a rich, warm brown or green. You exude calm and peace. And who doesn’t need more of that in their life?

3. You may be shy and reserved. You may feel like you have no colour, eggshell white or beige perhaps. Don’t underestimate your importance to the tapestry. Too many loud colours can be overwhelming. Too many similar earth tones won’t provide the needed contrast. You come alongside people and temper the effects of the other threads. You are vital.

4. Each thread appears on the surface of the tapestry of life at times only to run along on the underside for a while. Enjoy these times. Be refreshed. Prepare yourself for your next appearance. Think your time is over? As long as you draw breath you are part of someone’s tapestry. Think of your children, grandchildren, friends, even the staff of the care centre. Seek to be a beautiful influence no matter what your colour.

5. When some people think of tapestries, they think of the large works of art that hung on the walls of medieval castles. These amazing pieces portrayed important events in the life of the kingdom. They told a story. Each thread was added carefully and skillfully with the completed work in mind. When that completed work was hung, everyone saw the same picture and likely knew its history and meaning. It’s wonderful to realize you are part of something important, something that will speak to the current generation and generations to come.

6. Other tapestries are what you may think of as modern or postmodern art. The threads are rougher, more textured. They are woven together into what looks like abstract art to some, a jumbled mess to others. But when you step back and see the overall effect, it is easier to see the beauty. There is order and reason—even if it isn’t evident at first. Life can be like that. Sometimes it takes looking at things from a different perspective to see beauty in the tapestry.

7. It is a good idea to not only look at your place in the tapestry of life but to see your own life as a tapestry as well. There are bright threads that represent the joyous times; dark threads that represent the hard times and, even so, add depth and definition; and more subdued colours that represent the day-to-day.

8. Can you envision the tapestry of your life? Just for you—or maybe to share with others—try to describe that tapestry in words or, if you’re artistically-inclined, in a drawing or painting. Let your mind travel over the years. What was an ordinary day like growing up? As an adult? Most days are ordinary, made up of quiet colours that act as the backdrop for the other threads. They may overwhelm your memories. You may have to look carefully to see the bright threads—and you may be tempted to turn away from the dark ones, but together they make up the work of art that is your life. Contemplate that work of art; deliberately look for the beauty even when it’s hard to see—and seek to add beauty to the tapestry of other’s lives each day.