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Thoughtful and Intentional

 I have strong feelings about stationery.

Yes, of all things in this world, stationery.

I guess you could say my relationship with stationery could either be healthy or unhealthy. Unhealthy in the respect that I will, sometimes, have a wealth of it beyond what could seem a reasonable amount. But, also, healthy in that I believe there is a great deal of thoughtfulness and effort that goes into the art of letter writing.

I love the beauty and artistry that goes into the design of stationery. Whether it is a single card with a single corresponding envelope, a set of cards with matching envelopes, or just pretty paper or pretty envelopes, I love it. I love the fact that someone much more talented in art than me used their talents to share with others in such a beautiful and meaningful way. Maybe it’s because I remember the stationery my beloved Nana shared with me from the many letters we would write back and forth after my family and I moved from California to Georgia. It was meaningful to me to receive a handwritten note, letter, or card on something that I knew her hand had touched.

But I have a hard time deciding when to use such beloved stationery. Or, not even when to use it but who to use it for ... It's precious to me and I am meticulous in my decision-making, especially regarding stationery. Because there is a deeper meaning for me.

I've actually had to make a rule for myself that I am not allowed to purchase more stationery until a full set has been utilized. But that actually helps. Because I love sending cards. I love letting people know I think about them. Despite the fact that there may have been a great deal of time that has passed since I last saw or have spoken with someone, a handwritten card or letter on beautiful stationery can go a long way.

In the same sense, God puts a lot of thoughtfulness and effort into the creation of each of us.

After all, God doesn't just say, "Hey, I'm going to create this human being today."

I imagine it is an incredibly thoughtful process. In the same way that I put a great deal of thought into choosing the "right” stationery for the “right” person at the “right” time for the “right” purpose, God takes in creating each of us, His children.

Will this child be a boy or a girl? Girl.

Hair color? Brown.

Eye color? Hazel with a hint of blue or green depending on what she wears.

When I choose my stationery, I think of whether it could serve multiple purposes. Is it a beautiful floral design on the front yet blank on the inside, ready for whatever the Holy Spirit breathes through my words? Could I use it as a "Hey, just wanted you to know I'm thinking of you," or "I'm so sorry for your loss." Or does it have a more intentional meaning? Like a card that is pre-printed with a simple "thank you" on the front or inside? With plenty of room for growth, embellishments, accoutrements and room to grow? What about the design? Simple yet elegant ... busy yet beautiful ... modern or contemporary?

Do those details really matter?

Crazy, I know. The amount of thought I put into stationery could be considered exorbitant.

And yet, now, when I think of the meticulousness with which I choose stationery, I think of how God must have gone through the same process.

I am, again, reminded of this every time I hear Psalm 139:

You formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:13-14a)

That, likely, there was a great deal more thought put into how I was made. How each and every one of us “wonderfully made” by God. There is no magic wand that snaps us into a state of being. No spinning wheel that God to create each of us. In other words, none of us are random creations.

Our God is loving. He is kind. He is thoughtful and sees the beauty within each of us. And He knows the potential within each of us because He created each of us. And every time I am trying to decide on a new set of stationery to buy, I'm reminded of the fact that He was thoughtful and intentional in creating me.

And for that, I am thankful.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Thomas

Images: copyright 2022 Jennifer Thomas, all rights reserved. 


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