December 30, 2019

A Prayer for 2020

Devotion for the Week...

This week, I want to let the Apostle Paul speak for me. This was his prayer for the people of the Ephesian church and it is my prayer for all of us as we head into 2020.

"I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

"Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen" (Ephesians 3:16-21).
A prayer for 2020 |
Happy New Year to you and yours!

December 26, 2019

Ornaments for 2019

Every year I make my boys Christmas ornaments that reflect something about their year. It's one of my favourite traditions and, surprisingly, it seems to be one of theirs, too. Every year they ask what their ornament will be this year, even though I always give the same answer: "A surprise!" 😄

Here are this year's ornaments.
Ornaments |
Nathan's is the baseball gear because he declared himself to be Paul's baseball buddy this year and the two watched a lot of Toronto Blue Jays games together. He also thinks he has a shot at making it to the major leagues himself someday...never mind the fact that there's no organized baseball here so he has never played an actual game, lol.

Zachary got the airplane because he took two big trips with a school group this year. One was to Ottawa, Canada's capitol, and the other was to British Columbia, which is the opposite side of the country (and continent!). All told, I think the two trips combined involved 13 different flights.

Aiden's ornament couldn't be cross-stitched this year because all of those words would have made the ornament too big. Stormblessed is the name of the EP put out by Edgedancer in July. Edgedancer is a band made up of Aiden, Zachary and their friends Ben and Sam, who are also brothers. Aiden and Ben wrote all of the songs and Aiden fussed over getting all the different parts recorded. The EP was like his baby for a good portion of the year, so I was thrilled to be able to stitch it into an ornament for him. If you're interested in hearing their music, you can find them on Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play...and all the other streaming services I may not necessarily have heard of.

I didn't actually finish the ornaments in time this year. I had the fronts stitched and Christmas Eve morning I took the time to get the fronts and backs ready to be stitched together, but I didn't do that assembly until today. I didn't want to go away from everyone on Christmas Eve to do the secret stitching, so instead I just nestled the front pieces in the branches of the tree before I went to bed. Then I finished them up while having my tea today. I have a tutorial all about how I assemble the ornaments here.
ornament |
When I started these ornaments back in 2002, I wasn't sure I'd actually keep it up since I have a habit of starting long term projects and then abandoning them, but I now have one finished set. My plan all along was to make ornaments until they finished high school, which means this is Aiden's last one. Maybe...Paul pointed out that it doesn't seem right not to have an ornament about graduation, so there may be another one stitched and added in the spring.
Aiden's ornaments |
2002 - Noah's Ark, because we had a few Noah's Ark things for his room when he was born.
2003 - a phone because he pretended everything was a phone. This was before we even had cell phones, lol. It's not cross stitched because I couldn't find a pattern. Instead I used the phone from Sandra Boynton's book Hippos Go Berserk!, which is still one of my favourite board books to read.
2004 - a tractor because he loved all kinds of big machinery.
2005 - an elephant because that was his favourite animal.
2006 - a bike for when he first learned to ride.
2007 - a chalkboard for when he started school.
2008 - a police car for his fascination with the police.
2009 - a poppy for his interest in military history, in particular anything about WWI or WWII.
2010 - a pirate ship because he was so interested in learning about pirates.
2011 - a tent for our first summer spent camping. This was the only year all three boys got the same ornament.
2012 - a snow shovel because he has an incredible work ethic, which was really evident every time it snowed. He would often be the first one to go start shoveling the driveway and never, ever complained about getting it done, no matter how much snow there was.
2013 - drums. He had been drumming for a little while at this point, but the interest was more pronounced in 2013 and that was the year he upgraded his drum kit, by buying a used set.
2014 - a football because that is his favourite sport.
2015 - a guitar because that was the year he learned to play. Though he informed me on Christmas morning that it's a bass guitar since it only has four tuning pegs. I didn't point out that I don't think there are even four lines to represent the strings, lol. I'm pretty sure there are only three 😄 There's only so much you can do with needle and thread!
2016 - the word music, unfinished, with a pencil poised as if it's writing. This is to show that he started writing music. Paul was the one who figured out how we could represent that one.
2017 - The logo for The Gathering, a local music festival held in August. 2017 was the first year Aiden played as part of the band for Sherman Downey. It really amazed us that a professional musician would trust a bunch of young high school students to be his band, but the kids did great and Sherman has had them back each year since.
2018 - an approximation of our van, to commemorate him getting his driver's license.
2019 - the Stormblessed EP.

Phew! I really love this collection 😊 Do you have any long term handmade Christmas traditions?

December 23, 2019

Advent 2019 - Love

Devotion for the Week...

Well, here we are, at the start of the last week of Advent 😊 Are you ready for Christmas? At this point, we have a bunch of things left to wrap, some food prep to do for Christmas dinner and I'm almost finished the boys' ornaments. My in-laws will be arriving today, so the cleaning needs to be finished soon, too, lol.

So far this Advent season we've looked at the hope, peace and joy of Jesus. Today we look at His love.

Shortly before His death, Jesus said, "There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends" (John 15:13). Usually when we think of that verse, we think about His crucifixion and He did lay down His life for us then, but the whole process actually started decades earlier, when He first entered our world as a baby.

Think about it this way. Before He became a human, Jesus was not limited by our human constraints. He was omnipresent, able to be anywhere and everywhere all at once. He was outside of time, not held to the here and now like we are. He didn't have a physical body, so He didn't suffer from hunger, fatigue or pain. Then "he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being" (Philippians 2:7). Could anyone ever have laid down more than Jesus did when He left heaven to enter Mary's womb?

Why would anyone ever give up so much? For love, of course! "For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16). Jesus came because He loved us so much that we were worth the sacrifice of not only the cross, but also of his 'divine privileges'. He traded heaven for the manger because of amazing His love for us.
Jesus traded heaven for the manger because of amazing His love for us |

Thank you for spending another Advent season with me! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with family and friends 😊

December 21, 2019

Magnetic Fishing Game - December Island Batik Challenge

Note, the fabrics for this project were given to me by Island Batik as part of their ambassador program.

The December Island Batik ambassador challenge is to incorporate 3D into the project in some way. That could mean creating a quilt with the illusion of 3D elements, using actual 3D elements in a quilt (like prairie points, maybe) or making a 3D item. I chose to make a school of fish 😊

I often make the Christmas gifts I give to the kids I babysit. I've done play alphabets, personalized placemats, bean bag toss games, cat pillows (also an IB challenge) and now magnetic fishing games.

Aren't the fish cute?
Magnetic fishing game |
I followed this tutorial, which includes the templates for the fish and the worm with the magnet inside. I picked out all my fabrics and cut out the fish first, then went looking for ribbon to attach the washers. I was sure I had ¼" white grosgrain ribbon somewhere, but I must have used it all because there was none to be found. I did find this ⅛" blue ribbon and thankfully the blue coordinates with most of the fish fabrics I chose.

Stuffing the fish was the most time consuming part, probably because I was making 20 of them (5 each for the 4 kids). Not all of the fish are made of Island Batik fabrics, but half of them are 😊
Magnetic fishing game |
I used a variety of things to stuff the fish. One is stuffed with the bits of fabric left after cutting out the fish, I just cut them up even smaller to turn them into stuffing. That fish ended up being almost too heavy for the magnet to pick up. Oops! A lot of the fish are stuffed with the remnant of the stuffing I bought for the cat pillows last year. When that was gone, I raided my box of batting scraps and cut those up.
Magnetic fishing game |
Is it just me, or is ladder stitch pure magic? With only a few stitches that end up being almost completely invisible, you can go from gaping wound to finished seam.
ladder stitch magic |
The worm is made of two layers of felt with the magnet inside, stitched closed with a blanket stitch. I had hoped to add a layer of batting too, to reduce the risk of injury from toddlers wielding 'fishing rods' with hard magnets on the end, but the batting made the magnets too weak to pick up the fish. Still, even with only the felt, the magnets are less likely to cause harm.
magnetic fishing game |
The fishing rod is a dowel, which my husband cut into 1' lengths. I used hot glue to attach the rope to the dowel. The tutorial says to drill a hole, but I chose a dowel that is too thin for drilling a hole big enough for the rope to pass through. Hopefully the hot glue will hold well enough.
magnetic fishing game |
I'm hoping the kids enjoy fishing...and that they don't drive their parents crazy swinging around the fishing rods, lol. I do know that Silas, the 4 year old, is fascinated by magnets, so I know he'll have fun with it. Two of my own boys, Nathan and Zachary, even had to test it all out while I was taking these pictures, so the appeal isn't limited only to toddlers 😊

Unfortunately, this is my last project as an Island Batik ambassador. Despite how much I've loved being an ambassador, I decided not to apply for 2020 because I have had to admit there just aren't enough hours for all the things I want to do. Isn't that frustrating?? I have been finding it really hard to make time for pattern writing, especially, which isn't good at all when you are trying to grow a pattern design business. This doesn't mean I won't be creating with Island Batik fabrics, though! I still have quite a bit of what they generously sent in the ambassador boxes over these two years, so they'll be popping up frequently, I'm sure.

I'm still working on the ornaments for my boys, but that's the last of my Christmas sewing to be done. The way the days are filling up, I won't be at all surprised if I'm still stitching them on Christmas Eve. How is your Christmas sewing coming along?

December 16, 2019

Advent 2019 - Joy

Devotion for the Week...

It's week three of Advent already! So far we have considered the hope and peace Jesus brought when He came to the earth to live as one of us. This week we look at the joy He gives. I have to start this week's devotion with a prologue, though.

If you've been reading these devotions long enough, you may remember that I've said before that I struggle with writing about joy because there are people in the church suffering from depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses. These illnesses rob people of the joy that should be theirs. The church, unfortunately, sometimes compounds this by claiming that 'true Christians' don't need medication or counseling to manage their depression or other mental illness, they just need more faith. Even worse, I once sat through a sermon during which the pastor claimed mental illness was caused by demonic influence, which had me practically grinding my teeth because I knew there were people sitting in the congregation that day who deal with mental illness.

Mental illness is just that - an illness. It is not caused by demonic influence or by a lack of faith. There is no cause for shame or condemnation. Please, please, if you suffer from depression or anxiety or any other mental illness, please speak to your doctor. There is help available and you deserve that help.

Having said that, let's have a look at what the Bible says about joy.

In the Old Testament, before Nehemiah's time, the people had been exiled because they had turned away from God. They had been taken captive and lived in exile for decades, but in Nehemiah's day they were allowed to return to Israel. During the restoration of the temple, the Book of the Law of God had been found and they gathered all the people together to hear it read. Hearing it was a shock to the people, as they understood how very far they had fallen from the standard God had set for them. But Nehemiah told the people of Israel, "Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!" (Nehemiah 8:10).

Now, this might sound odd. The people were crying in their distress, but Nehemiah told them to celebrate! Why? Why would they celebrate when they just learned that God wanted so much more from them and for them?

Even today, this same sadness is often how people react when they first learn about God and how He wants us to live. They feel miserable because they know how they have lived and how far that is from the holy lives God wants us to live. People feel like it's impossible for God to love them because they have been too bad.

In His prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, though, Jesus prayed, "I told them many things while I was with them in this world so they would be filled with my joy" (John 17:13). Jesus taught His disciples about living the way God wants, both through the things He said and through what He modeled for them. But none of that was meant to bring them sadness. In fact, it was to bring them joy.

God is not standing over us, waiting gleefully to punish us for our sins. Rather, He is waiting expectantly, longing for us to turn to Him for forgiveness. If we now understand that "everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard" (Romans 3:23), then we are free to "repent and turn away from [our] idols, and stop all [our] detestable sins" (Ezekial 14:6). In other words, now that we know we are not right with God, we can change our direction and become right with Him, which is certainly cause for joy!

Nehemiah could tell the people that the joy of the Lord was their strength because now that they knew God's standard, they could begin to follow it and to live as He wanted His people to live. The same is true for us now. Once we trust in Jesus as our Savior, we are filled with joy that has nothing to do with our circumstances. It is the joy of knowing our relationship with God is secure and our sins have been forgiven.
Our repentance brings joy to God and to us, and it was made possible by Jesus coming to save us. That is the joy that comes from Christmas |
Jesus said, "There is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!" (Luke 15:7). Our repentance brings joy to God and to us, and it was made possible by Jesus coming to save us. That is the joy that comes from Christmas.

December 15, 2019

Planning for 2020

Can I just say that it feels a bit surreal to be thinking about the year 2020? I remember thinking, when I was a kid, that the year 2020 felt sooooo far off in the future it was hard to even imagine it. But, somehow, here we are 😊

Yvonne, of Quilting Jetgirl, is hosting her annual Planning Party again this year, which is just the push I needed to get thinking about the goals I hope to accomplish in 2020.

When I started writing this post, I read through the goals I set for this year and the mid-year review I did at the end of June. I was (only somewhat) amused to find that my progress now in December looks pretty much exactly the same as it did back in June, so I won't repeat myself. You can read that mid-year review here if you're really curious 😁 Now, on to next year!
2020 goals |
In no particular order, my goals for 2020 are:

1. Guitar quilts

My oldest, Aiden, will be graduating this spring and two of his teachers have made a huge impact on him because of their shared love for music. They have spent hours and hours above and beyond the scope of their actual job pouring into Aiden and other students with a love for music, encouraging them and helping them to learn and grow. I don't usually do teacher gifts at the end of the year, but these two deserve a huge thank you. With Aiden's input, I decided to use the Rock Concert pattern from On Williams Street to make them each a guitar quilt. This will be priority number one after Christmas because I really don't want to be rushing to have these finished in time.

2. Finish my Quilter's Planner bag

This bag has been a UFO for way too long. I have all the pieces cut out. I decided to quilt the panels for the front and back of the bag...I even have the front panel quilted.
free motion quilting on bag panel |
The back panel is partially quilted, too.
free motion quilting on bag panel |
At some point, though, I had to set the bag aside for something with a deadline (I don't remember what, exactly) and I never got back to it. I know it won't take me long to finish making the bag, I just have to actually work on it!

3. More patterns, in more shops

At the end of 2018, I had 4 printed patterns. I now have 10 which means I released 6 patterns in 2019. I'm really proud of that! Some of those were updates of older patterns and some were new. Those patterns were ordered by 14 quilt shops and one distributor (who sells to quilt shops).

For 2020, I'd like to release another 10 patterns. I have a real backlog of patterns I just haven't had a chance to get to yet, so that shouldn't be a problem, as long as I can find the time to actually write them, lol. I'd also like to have my patterns carried in more shops, but I don't want to set a number on that one. 'More' may not be very specific, but that's what I'm aiming for 😊

If you'd like to see Devoted Quilter patterns in your LQS, I'd love to have their contact information so I can reach out to them. Or you could request that they carry my patterns. Or both!

If you'd like to see my patterns, both print and PDF, head on over to my Etsy shop!

4. Teach a class

I want to teach a local class for beginners. I have a fun quilt designed for it and a venue lined up, I even have each week's lesson listed out. I just have to make the sample quilt and advertise to see if anyone signs up. Unfortunately, the advertising and waiting to see if anyone signs up is the scary part, so I've been putting it off. Imposter syndrome is hard to defeat!

5. Tame the UFO situation

I know I'm not alone in having too many projects started and abandoned, even though I still love them. Aside from the Quilter's Planner bag, I have so many other projects partially done and I'd love to get some of them moved into the finished pile. I had this on my goals list for this year, too, and it never really happened. Maybe 2020 will be the year! Some of those UFOs are patterns-to-be, so finishing them will get me closer to being able to release the patterns, too. Formal Garden, shown here, was an Island Batik ambassador project in August 2018...and it's still not quilted. The pattern isn't written, either. Both need to get done!
Formal Garden quilt |

6. Make more little quilts

I have a big box of batting scraps in various sizes that need to be used up. I do piece them together to make franken-batting, but I don't really like piecing batting big enough for throw size or larger quilts. I find it hard to keep the batting smooth when I'm piecing such big pieces. Because I've made mostly big quilts the past while, I have been adding to the box of scraps, rather than using them. The solution, obviously, is to make more small quilts 😊

7. More garment sewing

I am having a lot of fun with garment sewing and now I have so many patterns I want to try, it's hard to know what to make next! I'm definitely going to keep learning and exploring in 2020. The funny thing is, I said for years that I couldn't take up knitting (much as I would like to), because I already don't have time for all the quilts I want to make, so I don't need to add another crafty obsession. Somehow that never even entered the equation when I decided to take up garment sewing! Maybe because it's all done with the sewing machine, so it feels like an extension of what I was already doing? Who knows?! The main thing is, I'm having fun, right?

8. Make a sewing machine cover

I sew at our kitchen table. My previous machine fit into a cupboard in the hutch next to the table, but my new Janome is too tall so it sits on the top. Is it still new if I've had it almost a year? Anyway, the cover that came with it serves the purpose of keeping the dust off, but it's not very pretty. It also doesn't sit straight when I have a cone of Aurifil in place (which is most of the time).
I want to make a cover using the Create pattern by Kristy at Quiet Play. Pretty fabrics (probably blue, lol), some free motion quilting and an inspiring word would look so much nicer than this does.
2019 Planning Party  
 So those are my plans for 2020. I'm already curious to see what my mid-year review will look like 😊 What are your big goals for the year?

December 09, 2019

Advent 2019 - Peace

Devotion for the Week...

The month of December is just galloping along, isn't it? It's already the second week of Advent, which focuses on peace.

Not that long ago I read these verses: "Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful" (Colossians 3:12-15).

Living in peace with others requires forgiveness and a willingness to overlook faults, that's for certain, and doesn't that sound like exactly the prescription our world needs? I definitely feel that the world needs more people willing to try to live at peace with others.

I find it interesting that not once does Paul say that in order to live in peace with others we need to change their behavior. Instead, it's all about changing our own behavior and our reactions to the behavior of others. We are to clothe ourselves with mercy, kindness, gentleness and patience, he wrote. We are to forgive others and make allowances for them.

Amazingly, this is exactly how God created peace between Himself and us. "But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners" (Romans 5:8). Jesus wasn't born because humanity was perfect and at peace with God. He was born because we were lost and in need of a shepherd. He was born because we needed redemption, which only He could provide.
Mercy and forgiveness go a long way towards creating peace |
Now, because of the redemption Jesus provides, we have peace with God. Also because of Jesus and the Holy Spirit living within us, we can extend mercy and forgiveness to those around us. As God has shown us, mercy and forgiveness go a long way towards creating peace.

December 08, 2019

A Quick Tip for Storing Thread

I'm popping in with a quick tip today. Do you ever need to fill a bobbin with a new thread colour, but you don't have any empty bobbins? It happens to me all the matter how many new bobbins I buy!

I've read that loading a new colour on top of thread already in a bobbin can cause machine trouble, so I don't do that. For years I've looked for the bobbin with the least thread, unwound it and put the thread into the garbage. I hated doing it...what a waste...but I needed the bobbin.

The other day I realized that I could use an embroidery floss holder from my cross stitch supplies to hold the thread I took off the bobbin. If you don't have floss holders lying around, a piece of thin cardboard would do the trick, just cut a little slice into one end to hold the end of the thread so it doesn't come undone.
thread stored on embroidery floss holder |
Now that it's neatly wrapped around a floss holder, the thread is perfect for basting EPP shapes. I can load a bunch of different colours onto one floss holder, then toss it into my EPP kit for whenever I'm ready to baste. I feel much better not wasting perfectly good thread just so I can have an empty bobbin!

December 03, 2019

Multiplication Pattern Release

It's pattern release day! To be honest, it could have been pattern release day a couple of weeks ago, but trying to get a picture of a queen size quilt in November in Newfoundland is no easy feat. It's especially hard if you work during all of the daylight hours, lol. However, we had a scheduled water shut-off on Thursday for repairs to the lines, which meant school had to be closed, which in turn meant that all my babysitting littles stayed home with their teacher parents, my boys were all home AND the weather was good, so we high-tailed it out to do some picture taking.

This picture of my Multiplication quilt was worth the wait, I think! All three boys are standing on a picnic table behind the quilt to get it up off the ground. Nathan is in the middle with his arms stretched straight up to keep the middle from sagging back while the other two hold the corners. Future me needs to remember that 8' square quilts are hard to hold up 😄
Multiplication quilt pattern |
Multiplication is a fun, bold, one block design that gives an optical illusion feel to the quilt. Do your eyes focus on the black Xs, the blue Xs or the colourful squares first? To me it feels like the various parts are layered on top of one another and focusing on one component makes the others recede into the background.

My Multiplication quilt is made with Island Batik fabrics, all from their Foundations line (probably my favourite Island Batik fabrics). It's a great quilt for showcasing a couple of your most-loved fabrics in the Xs. I don't really use fabric with large scale designs, but I imagine they would work nicely in the Xs, giving them plenty of space to shine.

Multiplication was originally published in Make Modern magazine back in the spring. I have expanded the pattern to include baby (48" x 48") and throw (64" x 80") size options, along with the 96" x 96" queen size shown. Whether you need a gift for a baby shower, something special for a friend who needs a quilty hug or a new quilt for your own bed, Multiplication has you covered.

To celebrate the pattern release, Multiplication is available at its introductory price now through December 9th, so get your copy today!

Buy your Multiplication quilt pattern now

I would really appreciate it if you'd pin this image to help other quilters find the Multiplication pattern, too. Thank you for your support of my pattern business!
Multiplication quilt pattern |
What colours will you use for your Multiplication quilt?

I'm linking up with Needle and Thread Thursday, TGIFF, Beauties Pageant and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop

December 02, 2019

Advent 2019 - Hope

Devotion for the Week...

It's the first week of Advent! Is your tree up yet? We decorated ours yesterday and the house feels wonderfully festive now 😊 I've been looking forward to writing these Advent devotions for weeks now, so let's dive right into it!

Traditionally, the first week of Advent focuses on the hope Jesus brings us and what a hope it is! Because of Jesus, we have the hope of an eternity spent in heaven, where we will be in the presence of God forever. We usually take the word hope to mean little more than a wish or a desire for something. I hope it doesn't rain or I hope I get some fabric for Christmas. But the biblical meaning of hope is a confident expectation that what God has promised will come to pass. It is deeply rooted in our belief that He is faithful and that His promises are true. Our hope of eternity with Jesus is not wishful thinking, but rather an expression of confidence in a promise given by One who "never changes or casts a shifting shadow" (James 1:17).

There is so much good contained in the promise He has given us! Recording his vision of the future, John wrote, "Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever" (Revelation 21:3, 4).

First of all, our home will be with God. He will be among us, walking with us as He did before sin entered the world. What an amazing thought!

Then just think about an eternity with no death, sorrow, crying or pain. It's hard to imagine, isn't it? Those things are such a constant in our world that trying to imagine life without the fear of disease or tragedy is pretty much impossible. There will be no heart attacks, no car accidents and no cancer. There will also be no abuse, no addiction and no mental illness. It sounds too good to be true, but it is absolutely true.
Advent - Hope |
Background quilt is my Christmas Knots and Crosses quilt
This is the hope we have because of Jesus. He came to the world as the baby we celebrate at Christmas, lived a sinless life and died on the cross, all to restore our relationship with God. He did all of it so that we can have the hope, the confident expectation, of eternity with Him in a world released from the curse of sin. This is why Matthew declared, "his name will be the hope of all the world" (Matthew 12:21).