31 May, 2013

Indelible Imprints

This photo was taken yesterday at church during our Quilt Ministry workshop before we locked the closet doors and "closed up shop" for our summer break. We've been taking the summer months off since we began, almost thirteen years ago; I'm not really sure why we do that, it's not like we have small children at home, but it's fine with me that we do. (Our Senior Pastor happened to stop by at picture time, he comes downstairs for a short visit every week, but he's not a quilter!) When our Quilt Ministry began it was on a trial basis. I remember there being a certain hesitancy on the part of the church leadership at the time; not that there was ever any out and out opposition, but rather more of an attitude of let's wait and see what happens. We struggled, as a group, in the beginning; attendance was low and our working location was shifted from place to place, we scrounged around for a storage area for our supplies. Eventually, over time, acceptance came and the ministry grew; we were happy when we were granted a real closet in the same room where we set up and work, and downright giddy when we scored a second one!  We are affirmed in our role as Quilt Ministers today, we have our own financial reserve and are recognized by the congregation as an active and vital group. Over this time period our Quilt Ministry membership has changed, we've mourned the loss of some and welcomed new quilters along the way, but the one thing that has never changed is our mutual respect and support of, and for, each other. Each and every one of the ladies I have worked with through this ministry has left an indelible imprint on my life. Since the Ministry's inception in January of 2001 God has been with us, guiding us, and binding us together into a solid team for His work.

From our morning devotions today: "How often in your life has what appeared to be a brick wall actually been a fence around a new garden filled with wonderful opportunities? We never know where a simple decision might lead.  Offering a greeting to a new person might lead to a great friendship.  Going for a job interview might lead to a new way of life.  Every day contains the possibility for a life-transforming encounter with God through some unanticipated new connection...  ...the willingness to say "yes" is the invitation to be transformed".*

I cannot express the amount of joy and depth of the profound impact that our church's Quilt Ministry has had on my own life, I am grateful that God encouraged me in this leap of faith and stood behind me, preventing retreat, in those early years when pushing forward was tough going. Through perseverance and enormous support  real-life transformation has occurred;  I, for one, have the indelible imprints to prove it!

Life is Good!

*  Christ In Our Home today's text by Kathryn Haueisen of Houston, TX


Pat said...

Well said. I love the devotion.

45th Parallel Quilter said...

What a wonderful post. Thanks for sharing. I, as well, loved the devotion. Food for thought AND the soul. Linda

Kathy ... aka Nana said...

What a lovely devotion.

I am, frankly, a little jealous of your quilting group. I so wish I could find a group of real-life quilters to be a part of (and what a blessing it would be if this group were my sisters in the faith).

Quiltdivajulie said...

". . . the willingness to say yes . . . "

Profound on so many levels.

Enjoy the summer break!

Janet O. said...

Loved this, Mrs. G! Have had a similar experience.
Back in 1985 I started participating in a similar group at our church that I had helped organize. I was the youngest one in the group, and over time age took its toll on most of them. We disbanded a few years ago when most of the women could no longer get out and about. Now all but 3 or 4 have passed on. I miss that warm and wonderful group of women, and my life has definitely been enriched by having spent a few hours with them every Wednesday for several years. (We always took a break for the summer, too, under the guise of too much yard work to do.)

lindsey said...

I expect those weekly quilting times are full of many blessings and great fellowship. I also guess the first one after summer break is especially great!

Domestic Designer said...

Such an important ministry! My Mom recently received a quilt from a local church's quilt ministry. She was so touched! She has a terminal illness and receives such peace when she sleeps underneath this quilt. Recently she was hospitalized for 2 weeks and the quilt was on her bed the entire time. I recently took pictures of the quilt for my blog and will probably do a post soon. Thank you for your ministry. You will never know how much those quilts and the love sewn into each stitch mean to the recipients and their family members. God Bless You and Your Friends!!

Carol said...

What a beautiful, beautiful post...thank you for sharing with us. I absolutely love the devotion.

LizA. said...

Our old church had a small but incredibly industrious group. It always amazed me how many quilts they were able to make each year. 1sunday a year there was a blessing of the quilts with all the quilts hanging over the backs of the pews and over the communion rail. Tis truly a good thing!

Karen said...

What a great post. God is good.