Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Glass Marbles In My Mug

Glass in Glass Posted by Picasa

"If every year is a marble, how many marbles do you have left? How many sunrises, how many opportunities to rise to the full stature of your being?" ~ Joy Page (American Actress, b.1924)
Have you lost your marbles? How many times have you heard that question? Children hearing this must think, at least for a while, that if we shake our heads we might hear the tinkling of shiny glass marbles rolling around in our noggins. Well, here are my marbles. Some are clouded glass with bright colored speckles; others have inner swirls of color in a clear round ball; and still others have a smoky amber color to the glass. My favorite are the cracked marbles.

I made cracked marbles once when I had a chemistry set. More correctly, I "accidentally" made cracked marbles. One Christmas in Indiana, I received a chemistry set. Thinking it most prudent to set this up in an open area with nothing to catch on fire, my folks put a big table in the large basement room of the parsonage. I opened the kit and started with the first experiment. The set included an alcohol lamp to heat the reactions. (It was probably a good thing that there was no gas access for a Bunsen burner, who knows what I would have blown up.) One of the first experiments was to heat a glass marble and watch the change in color (glass glowed red) with the heat. Then you were supposed to let it cool on its own. I had a beaker of cold water there for the next experiment. After heating the glass and making my observations I put the marble down to cool. Glass doesn't cool as fast as my 12 year old brain thought it did. A few minutes later and without thinking I picked it up. It was still VERY HOT!!! Brain told my fingers to "DROP IT! NOW!", so I did, right into the cold water. I heard a sizzling sound and when I picked the marble out of the water (with forceps this time), it was finely cracked in an all over crinkle lace like pattern. You could see the fine lines running in all directions inside the glass. It was beautiful.

Sometimes we are like the marble. Pressures, cares, trials, trouble, worry and hardship all work together to heat our marble almost to the point of meltdown. Then the cold water comes along; a crisis. Sometimes we can cool down slowly and come out the other end no worse for wear; but often we hit that crisis, that brick wall like a pool of ice water and we crack. We may not break or fall totally to pieces, but we do a lot more than bend. As with the marble we are not destroyed but we are forever changed. Because God doesn't want to lose any of His marbles, He shapes our fine cracks into a lovely intricate pattern, often more beautiful than before. I'm so glad that, as God's marble I'm never alone in the fire or in the water.

Submission for Thursday Challenge topic "glass". (end of post)

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