What can you make from a mason jar, a piece of cloth, a ribbon, some clear glass stones, paper and a Sharpie marker? A jar of inspiration, that’s what!
Several years ago, my kiddos and I set to work in our little Santa’s Workshop, making these treasures as Christmas gifts for loved ones and friends. To this day, we still receive comments of gratitude from the recipients of those gifts, saying they use their jars every day and it brings them much joy to reach in, choose a stone and carry that reflection with them as they go about their home and workplace duties.
But, wait! I’m getting ahead of myself. Back to making the jars…we first discovered this creative idea online, after Googling ideas for simple, homemade Christmas gifts.
There’s really not much to it, and it’s a fun way to spend time as a family. Here are the basics:
You take a pile of those little glass stones you often see at the bottom of people’s fish tanks, or in a flower vase. Use one of the stones to trace a bunch of circles on a piece of paper. Inside each circle write a single word—something to inspire the person using the jar, and help them to have peace-of-mind, comfort and a prayerful spirit throughout the day. (Some of the words we used were things like: breathe, pray, sing, laugh, think, be still (ok, that’s two words, but it’s still good) rest, share, etc… Cut out those circles, and glue each of them to individual stones. Place the stones inside a mason jar. Use a pretty piece of cloth to cover the lid of the jar (glue it). Tighten the lid onto the jar and tie a lovely ribbon or piece of raffia or twine around it.
Voila! You now have a jar of inspiration! When we gave these as gifts to our family and friends, we attached little cards to explain how to use them. The idea is to reach in and take out one stone at the beginning of your day…whatever word/idea is written on that stone becomes your meditative focus for the day. (Don’t forget to put the stone back into the jar at the end of the day!)
I often hear people say they’d like to have more time in life to pray. I usually answer that “life itself” can be a prayer if we are focused on the Lord and doing every small act with great love for Him and His Divine Plan. But, actual-factual “prayer time” is wonderful, too, and these jars of inspiration are an easy way to develop a prayerful spirit in a busy world.
How many times have you been so busy that you say things like, “I almost forgot to breathe!” Or, “I haven’t sat still for five minutes all day!” A handy dandy little jar of inspiration may be just the help you need to remind yourself to “stop and smell the roses” so-to-speak.
Who will you inspire, today?
Judy Dudich resides in the beautiful woods of Pennsylvania, where 24 acres of land and a home-office provide the perfect setting for her children’s home-education and her own homesteading and business ventures. Life is full of blessings (and challenges!) for Judy, as a wife, mother of 10 and Grammy to six. She is a published author, whose book, “I Surrender/A Study Guide for Women” continues to encourage and support others in Christian family lifestyles throughout the world. Judy has also previously worked in the online speaking circuit. Her passion for permaculture, re-purposing, foraging and organic gardening fills her days with learning and adventure that she loves to share.