All my life I've been an early riser. As a kid I would
be up first. It's like that searching for abalone shells. You have to get up with the mornings first light and be on the beach.
The abalone reflects the light. In full sun they disappear into the brightness. When that happens you can't see them. If it's
cloudy you're ok. Then the search begins. Good eyes are a must. If you are far sighted you can see them in the distance between
the rocks and sand. But any old beach won't do. You need to know the right beach. It's like finding a needle in a haystack.
You need to know where to find the Secret World of Abalone.
When I found my first piece of this gem shell, I was living
on the street with the homeless. Up early I'd head down to the beach to catch the tide and any shell that washed up on the
shore. The waves would crash on the sand and rocks and I would chase down the abalone. You had to be fast or the next wave
would hit you and that was no fun. I'd have a shopping bag to carry what I found. Some days, after a few hours, which passed
like minutes, I'd have a big load to carry. Whether big or small I felt blessed and gave glory to God and my Savior Jesus
I'm going to tell you how to find treasures of beautiful abalone that would make any museum jealous. I'm going
to tell you what you'll need to know and what to wear. And I'll give you specific instructions how to make what you find a
true gem shell in the raw without hurting your body and causing you serious damage. People who know abalone are very careful
working with it or they DONT work it at all!
Abalone is a natural resource off the west coast of the United States.
There are many varieties such as red, green, black, white and pink. I'm not saying the shell of any of these is not desirable
but if I had to choose any one it would be the big reds for color, thickness and overall versatility. You will find the green
to be colorful as well but smaller and the black very pearly with hints of pinks and a trace of green with a clear opal essence.
For jewelry the red is tops. That's why Mendocino, Ca is the best area to search. It's a home to the big reds. Next, I'm going
to tell you where to find some pieces and what to do to preserve their beauty.
Recently I did an exhibition of abalone
jewelry my wife and I design. We've been doing this for 18 years. During our showing an older man in his 80's came to the
table and studied our jewelry for what seemed like a few minutes. I was watching him and finally asked if he had a favorite
gal he was thinking about and if I could be of some help. He bowed his head and started to cry saying he did but she died
a year earlier. I reached out and went to his side and asked him if his wife knew The Lord Jesus. He said yes, still in sadness
and tears. He really missed her. But what comfort he has now.She believed the gospel. Once his wife's spirit left her body
it was immediately with God; her body in a state of sleep, waiting for the call of our Lord, when it will rise up from it's
resting place a spiritual body perfect for eternity and never again to taste corruption or sin. Thank you Father for Jesus
Christ who will raise us up on that day. There is loving sadness in death but strength in the sure hope that the Lord keeps
In this life one encounters a lot of baloney. Of late
I would have to say ah baloney is in vogue. That's a good reason to get to truth and a foundation that's rock solid. I strongly
suggest opening The Bible and stand on the rock of all rocks who is Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. And that's no baloney.
Jesus made the abalone and gave me some. I am humbled
by this gift . He taught me how to see it for it's real beauty and create something worthy for his glory. I thank the Holy
Spirit inside me for teaching me to give The Glory to God. Next I will try to help you in your journey to the abalone world
and, if God wills it, to forevermore in His family and the Golden City prepared for all who love Him.
The abalone is
a gem shell, multifaceted in color, with opal and pearl essence. It has a hardness value of 4, which is durable and not difficult
to work with in regards to breakage. One must be prepared to work carefully when trying to alter its shape or drill it. Lapidary
equipment is necessary when grinding and must be water fed so dust from the shell is washed into a holding basin and not let
into the atmosphere. Breathing the dust will cause lung damage especially over a modest period of time. A professional facemask
is essential to totally protect against inhaling remnants of dust, which has asbestos like effect in the lungs. The mask must
be rated for very fine dust and fumes and is a double filter type costing about $44.DO NOT use any other type of mask or think
holding ones breath is sufficient. Gloves are helpful so the abalone doesn't get into the pores in a liquid form though I
don't know for sure if that's a problem but better safe then sorry. Some people are allergic to the dust and can have a bad
reaction if inhaled like passing out. I caution everyone that it's safer NOT to alter abalone unless you have proper training
from a professional on how to deal with it.
Sand blasting will be effective in starting the finishing process. Use
medium to fine grit, wash and oil with olive or canola and see how it looks. If not fully acceptable then go to 00 thru 0000
steel wool and do a final polish with green jewelers rouge and buff with high speed buffing device. You also might want to
oil the shell before you finish it by allowing the oil to soak in overnight and wipe off in am then buff. If you want to do
all this by machine get a small tumbler from a lapidary store with 4 types of grit and follow book instructions.
working the abalone can be very instructive and will also strengthen your upper body by dynamic natural tension. As you work
the shell you begin to get intimate with it and see things you didn't see before. The abalone commands a careful eye to visualize
it's potential and see it's true colors and imagery like a surreal painting on a live canvas. It WILL speak to you if you
get into it and it will entice you into an intimacy that will astound you and compel you to go deeper into it's complexity.
It is the queen of all shells on the planet bar none.
Let me tell you a little story about the power of abalone. I
do showings in California and one day had the pleasure of meeting the famous actress and artist Jane Seymour who came to my
table and just fell in love with several abalone necklace designs that she just had to have. They looked beautiful on her
and she purchased both of them instantly. This happened again with model and actress Pamela Anderson who slipped on a crystal
and gold anklet with a striking piece of abalone as the featured attraction. It was made for her she mused. Pierce Brosnan
stood at my display for what seemed like minutes staring at the abalone like it was other worldly. Now his wife Kiley wears
a necklace of abalone that she loves. And the same thing happened with Michael Madsen's wife, De Anna, who also purchased
an anklet and never takes it off. People say they prefer abalone over their diamonds and other precious stone designs. The
shell can be overpowering. Some contend it has healing power and in Native American folklore it was widely known to be used
in battle, high ceremonies, and as precious acquisitions.
I never make claims that abalone can affect particular health
problems. Many do including a famous chiropractor I worked with in L.A. In the world all kinds of beliefs exist. For me there
is one supreme healer who will even raise the dead at the appointed time and surely can heal me of any disease or overcome
any problem I may have according to His will. He is The Lord and Savior of this world, the great physician and the only begotten
Son of GOD who is The Lord of Glory, Jesus Christ. It was he who gave me my real life and abalone and he will give me eternal
life, one day, in a new body that will last forevermore. When I searched along the rugged coast of northern California for
pieces of the wild abalone I noticed that divers who came ashore with their catch would often carve the abalone from out of
the shell and discard what remained. And I would be right there to pick it up. You cant imagine how beautiful it looks fresh
out of the Pacific in gorgeous colors and stimulating some creative design.The lesson is learned : see where they dive for
abalone and get down to that beach and look for it. Ask the locals where the abalone is and any shopkeeper will be glad to
make a suggestion or two.
If your interested in travel you might consider going north of Mendocino, Ca as far up as
the Oregon coast. Beyond that there is abalone but it is not good for jewelry. It has very little color. Can you climb? Are
you in good physical shape and have proper boots to wear? You will need to be very careful climbing down and up fairly steep
cliffs. Especially in damp or rainy conditions which often is the case along the coast. Take some water and a piece of fruit
for your stay. And make sure you'll be warm. You can always take something off but if you dont have it you may have to leave
too soon or you might get sick. Early mornings can be chilly in Mendocino.
Without God in my life everything is in
vain. It's not easy to get ones mind around this truth. Earlier I spoke of having the pleasure of visiting with Jane Seymour,
the famous actress and fine artist, at her home in Malibu,Ca. I was wearing an abalone cross I carved. During the several
hours I spent with her she asked if I was a Jew and I responded "yes". She proceeded to inquire, do Jews wear the cross, not
in any derogatory manner . I responded that I did. I would have loved the opportunity to talk with Jane about this but I could'nt.
Now id like to say a few things about that subject.
When God called Abraham as the father of Judaism it was because
He knew that he would be faithful to the promises that God made. The most important was his faith to believe the promise that
God would send His Messiah to deliver the Jews from the curse of sin and from spiritual death itself. This promise could only
be accepted by faith. And Abraham was a man of faith. So there are two aspects to being a Jew; born of Abraham's line thru
Isaac AND faithful to the promise of a savior who would be born thru that line and be sent by God to deliver the people from
their sins and it's penalty of death, eternal separation from God. That promise was fulfilled when Christ was born of a virgin,
died for our sins and rose from the dead on the third day never to die again. This I believe. And the empty cross signifies
His death, resurrection, and the doorway to eternal life thru Him. That is the Jew that I am . For by grace am I saved through
faith and that NOT of myself it is the gift of God lest I boast of works. And according to scripture no one has perfect works,
not even a great actress like Jane Seymour. Oh how I wish I could be in her presence again. She is a beautiful woman and very
smart. I would explain that Jews do wear the cross and founded the very church Christ loves. The Jew didn't reject Jesus,
it was the nation of Israel that did. But in each generation , a remnant of Jews are called by GOD and come to the place of
grace and belief in Him. One should indulge in bible study starting with the Old Testament and answer this simple question:
what's wrong with Jesus and eternal life in Him?
When was the last time you went on a treasure hunt?
In our work-a-day life there is little time to indulge in random exploration, to say nothing of hours, searching remote beaches
where only seagulls fly and other human footprints are never seen. If one could only set aside the daily labors of life and
meander down to a new and mysterious beach imagine the thrill of finding a giant abalone shell in nearly perfect condition.
This happened to me, one fine morning, in Mendocino,Ca.
It was cold that day and the brisk wind chilled my face as
I watched huge Pacific waves hit the shore with thunderous roars while a residue of rain fell mist like on my face. I was
at my spot I walked to the beach too many times before. Slippery and wet, the muddy trail was dangerous to hike. I decided
to go and sidestepped like a beginning skier on a steep mountainside careful in each movement for to fall would leave me seriously
injured and isolated from any possible help. I made it and with a big sigh of relief breathed in the refreshing sea air. And
right there, a few feet from where I stood, lay a big red abalone shell in all it's splender, the biggest one I ever saw.
Here was a treasure, a gift of nature by God's command, for me.
Out of nowhere, unmerited favor cast a glance my way,
and realization dawned that God had blessed me to make this find. I thought about it for a while as I walked the beach picking
up small pieces of abalone and avoiding the huge waves hitting the shore. How good is God! To create such a shell and lay
it right at my feet. I began to sing a song of praise looking out over the ocean and to Mendocino village in the distance
still in morning repose.
Isn't this how God gives us salvation.We did nothing to deserve His favor . We are not worthy
of such a blessing: the free gift of eternal life by grace through faith in His Son who died for our sins and rose for our
justification. And not that I could do anything to earn it but solely because God loved me from before I was in my mother's
womb, even before the world was made! Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. Thank you Father.