28 July, 2016

What Is Ministry?

I am blessed to be a part of two ministries that have nothing to do, necessarily, with a church in particular. I always believed that the word itself, ministry, implied the church. My understanding of the word is broader today: I think of it now as service to others; of meeting a specific need. Webster defines ministry this way: "a person or thing through which something is accomplished". So, what ministries am I referring to? Nap Blankets, for one. Our local quilt guild supplies nap blankets to the schools that offer a pre-K program. There is a criteria for the schools that offer this program: 75% of the students qualify for free or reduced lunch, these are children in need. The Bee (small quilt group) to which I belong has adopted a school, we have committed to providing three classes their nap blankets (45 students) for each school year. The little ones choose their blanket on day one and they nap under it all year and take it home forever on their last day. Suffice it to say they LOVE their nap blankets-- and our Bee loves making them.
The second ministry I am blessed to participate in makes pillowcases for children with cancer. I couldn't be more grateful to have a LQS which supplies the classroom space and the fabrics! We gather once a month to make cute, colorful pillowcases to lift the spirits of hospitalized children and to brighten their otherwise grim and clinical surroundings. 
This pillowcase maker has just begun sewing again after a thirty nine year hiatus from her machine; she did a fantastic job! What ministry have your sewing skills brought you to-- right here and right now? Even if you might not think of a local project as a ministry, it just may be that. We ARE the church, no matter our background, our denomination or where we sit on Sunday mornings. Know that God is calling all of His children to take care of each other today-- right where we are.
Luke 12:48 -- "Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required..."
Life is Good!

12 comments:

Nancy, Near Philadelphia said...

I love this post, Debbie. Aren't we fortunate that God has blessed us with this gift of sewing so that we can use it in these wonderful ways! My small monthly hand-sewing group has committed to each making a charity quilt over the summer; we are making baby quilts for underresourced moms and lap quilts for wheelchair-bound veterans. I'm trying to do one of each.

cityquilter grace said...

i used to have a pastor who told us (congregation) that we were ALL ministers and that ministry is never convenient, which is sometimes often true. not with sewing for charity tho...blessed to belong to 2 guilds right now with ongoing charity sewing projects and one current one for the WV flood victims...oh, so THAT is why i have all these flimsies on hand...

stitchinpenny said...

I donate quilts to various places, but I do at least one in 10. I don't belong to a guild, but there is always some really good cause that needs a quilt or quilt blocks online.

Lindah said...

Amen. I surely do agree. God gave me this skill and love of sewing for a reason. Early on, it was for one thing. Now, it seems to be to share His love through quilts for folks who have health issues. It is a blessing to be able to do it.

Bless you and all the other ladies in your groups and those who commented.
Linda

KaHolly said...

Well written post! I jump in wherever I can! Sometimes I'm able to assist in a group initiative and often on my own. Your ministries are two great efforts! I applaud you all. Keep up the good work! XO

Anna said...

A couple of us are making twin quilts for our local homeless shelter that will be opening up in a few months. We need a total of 20 to start and we have 2 completed, two that need binding, 3 that need quilting, one that needs borders added and another one in progress. Happy Stitching, Anna

Quilting Babcia said...

What a beautiful post. Ministry to be successful needs to be in line with our God-given talents, and it seems quilters know that instinctively. I'm coordinating a new (5 or 6 months old) quilt ministry at our small country church. We have 4 or 5 very dedicated ladies who are learning to make quilts, other than myself only one had ever made quilts previously. So, I've found myself in the very unfamiliar role of teacher. So far we've given away 8 quilts, four more are in process. Even more important perhaps is that this tiny group is fulfilling a ministry to each other, something that was apparently very much needed. God provides what we need to achieve His purposes!

Little Penpen said...

Both are wonderful ministries. Keep going!! You also have a blog ministry.... I love reading your blog. :)

Sherrill said...

I did the Home of the Brave quilts and quilts for our local Fisher House (for vets) and continue to do Quilts of Valor. I also make little rag quilts for babies at our local county hospital in addition to crocheted baby hats (which I realize isn't stitching but still a ministry). I have really wanted to make quilts and/or pillowcases for the Ronald McDonald house but they are always OVERLOADED with both (I check whenever we're down there serving dinner, another ministry). Quilters are definitely a generous group of stitchers!!

Panto Pam said...

I am a part of a quilting ministry at church and we make comfort/encouragement quilts for people in our community who are going thru a difficult time or illness and also as a housewarming present to new Habitat for Humanity homeowners. I, too, am a firm believer that we should let our light shine and use our talent to bless and show others about Jesus and his never ending love for each of us.

Havplenty said...

Ministry is in service to others whether you are doing it specifically in a church setting or are working in God's vineyards, reaching and loving his people. I make pillowcases to donate to abused women shelters, donate Christmas gifts & clothing to the women with children shelters and have now included my sister (a new sewer) to making fleece blankets to give to those in need. I also donate quilts to Project Linus and Quilts for Kids. I just donated some pillowcases today to a local church for their women's health fair. Keep doing your ministry to bless others.

tushay3 (at) yahoo (dot) com

Tanya said...

I have made pillowcases for a children's cancer society also. In fact I think that was where I got the pattern to begin with. It would be nice to work with a group though.