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11/23/04
Dearest Fred

I am with you in the ball of yarn discourse.

Thankfully, we all have a ball of yarn in our lives. It is the ball of yarn which keeps us questioning ourselves and we know that God uses all these doubts to push us deeper into Him. As you have said before, it is a scary step to take but, until we take the fear-filled leap of faith, trusting that God is our stay and our keeper, we keep agonizing over the ball of yarn.

I believe it is the ball of yarn which keeps me humble. It has a purpose - it keeps me from self-righteousness - it keeps me from ever believing that I am the contents of my temple, that I will become a better person. It forever keeps me knowing that He is the All in my all. It is the ball of yarn which constantly reminds me that my holiness is in Him.

It is the frustration and irritation of untangling the ball of yarn that allows others to see that what we believe in has nothing to do with works. God created us just the way we are, with our individual personality. Without it we would be robots without emotion, paragons of virtue, very hard to live with. Some of us lose it with a ball of yarn, I personally lose it with an inefficient loading of the dishwasher and quite often with my computerís unknowable ways but I know that God uses all my weaknesses to His good purpose.

It is the ball of yarn which allows others to see that it is not by works that we are saved. Without the ball of yarn we would be just like the Pharisees. Clean on the outside, filthy within.

I will always have a ball of tangled yarn. There were many balls, which, after years of frustration, are no longer tangled. However, as soon as I settle, thinking that at last I have untangled all the balls of yarn, another rears its ugly head.
A final word! How comforting and loving it is for others, when they see that we love them enough to ask for their forgiveness for our ball of yarn. I love the warm fuzzy I receive from Derekís initial hug when he arrived home from work but, I must admit, that, when he - frustrated from his work and his hour of noisy commuting - takes it out on me and then comes to me with a hug of love, asking for my forgiveness, that I get a much warmer fuzzy. Isnít this another reason for our ball of yarn - that we love others enough to humbly come to them asking for their forgiveness?
As those of you who were at Louisville in September heard, it was my losing it, which was the cause of my sisterís acceptance of the Lord, because, for the first time in our lives, I had asked for her forgiveness for my loss of temper.

As for the dog, doesnít even his tail come out from between his legs and wag most gleefully when the master says, with a pat on the head, ďIím sorry, Poochie?Ē
Thanks to the questioner, for opening up this subject with his honesty.
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Fred, for once again confirming what I believe and have written in the following chapter from my book, which speaks to the same thing:

Iris.