One of my duties here at Pipe Spring National Park has been sewing historic costumes. I’ve made aprons, skirts, blouses, and bonnets. One blouse in particular gave me fits. Here is a picture of the blouse but the picture looks better than the blouse actually is.
First, even though I was sewing a size 14 blouse, the waist of the blouse only measured 28 inches. The usual size of a 14 waist is 36 inches so this blouse wasn’t going to fit anyone except an extremely skinny person. I let out a couple of the tucks to make the waist a more reasonable size.
Second, the sleeves were strangely designed. When I set them in the armholes, I could tell they were strange – they turned in a funny way. One of the rangers who usually wears an 8, tried it on and couldn’t move her arms. I had followed the instructions precisely so the sleeves were just poorly designed. I took off the sleeves and made a second set of basic, puffed sleeves.
Third, when I had another ranger try on the blouse, she could move her arms and had plenty of room around the waist, but the blouse only came to an inch below her waist. It was never going to stay tucked in to a skirt. With all the material I had left, I added five inches to the length of the blouse.
Tom saw the blouse on the hanger and said what he usually says when he sees something I’ve made, “It looks nice!” When I explained all the trouble I had with it, he said it was kluged together. After looking up kluge – “an ill-assorted collection of parts assembled to fulfill a particular purpose” – I had to agree. At any rate, I am done with it – I can’t make any more changes because I am out of that fabric! Hopefully it will find its way into someone’s historical wardrobe and fulfill its purpose.
As I was working on this awful, frustrating blouse, I though about the way some of God’s creations look kluged together. What was he thinking when he made an anteater or a giraffe? Each of his creations has a specific purpose and has parts designed for that specific purpose.
So, if you feel a little kluged together – know that you are designed for a specific purpose. Each of your experiences in life, your circumstances, even the way you look, has come together to make you a person God can use in a specific way at a specific time. You may not always be able to see it, but God designed all of you to fulfill the purpose he has in mind for you.
I’m thankful that God is a much better creator than I am. I am also thankful that God can use all my parts to fulfill his particular purpose for my life. As Psalm 139:14 says, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”