Since my decision to approach people and share some of what my God means to me using my quilt making skills, it’s been an incredible journey that I could never have imagined. But the journey started on shaky ground. In the beginning, I was disorganized and ill prepared in almost every way. I am sure I looked like something out of an off-beat sitcom that had been cancelled! If not for my husband’s patience, encouragement and never-ending help I would have stopped before I ever really begin.
Here’s how I approached folks then, and still do today. I say something along these lines “Would you do me a favor?”. Which is usually met with a questioning glance. Followed by “Maybe, what is it?”. Then I smile and say “ Sign my quilt, please!”. In almost every encounter, folks have a connection with quilts and say yes immediately. And the conversation starts. I asked them to sign their name and the place where we met. As they’re signing, I explain that it’s also a prayer quilt. I tell them that I not only will pray for them, by I have prayer partners will. All across the country people have been accepting these prayers gratefully. Without exception, people have always signed, generally with excitement.
The asking for signatures was easy. Folks really want to help others and be a part of something outside themselves. The hard part was not realizing how unprepared I really was. I started with my “quilt in progress” in a tote bag. That proved to be a problem as the quilt grew. My fabric pens always seemed to vanish into the tote bag abyss! I always give signers a very small gift for their trouble which comes in a small zip bag. It contains a Gospel tract, a few pieces of hard candy, a small pocket cross, and a thank you card with information about us and the quilt. In those early days, I never seemed be able to get to those gift bags to the signers gracefully! Either they hid in my purse or spilled out everywhere. Marshall and I look like inept jugglers! In the beginning, having all the parts of the prayer quilt at the ready, was a struggle!
Pictured at the top is that first prayer quilt! It is a small quilt that represents a feeble beginning. Praise God who took that small beginning and allowed it to grow into something that is bigger than I could have ever imagined.
This magnificent tree is in Highland Park, Meridian, Mississippi. It serves as a reminder to us. Just as that tree started with a tiny seed and grew into this towering tree, that small good thing you so tentatively attempted can grow into so much more than you thought possible! This picture was taken in November while we were en route to Georgia to visit my sister for Thanksgiving.
Written by Susan