26 July 2005

On Why I Quilt - Part Two

I like to make things for people. I like thinking about the person as I'm making the thing. Of course in this case, it's a quilt and it usually takes a long time. So I get to pray over the person too and do so quite thoroughly.

This is usually a joy. I especially enjoyed the time I made a quilt for my brother and his fiancee when he got married. I prayed over both of them and their marriage. I've made quilts for "my" kids that graduated from high school when I was in youth ministry at our church. I hope those quilts kept them a little warmer when they were away from home that first year.

Don't get me wrong, I don't sit there, intoning the Holy Name of God with each stitch. I do not have a holy glow about me. I am not a monk. I am not holy. But while I work on the quilt, I think about the person I'm making it for, and I pray for them as the thoughts occur to me.

Sometimes this is hard. Right now, for instance, I'm working on a quilt for an aquaintance/friend - the man we bought our house from. My guild makes quilts for soldiers who have lost limbs in the war in Iraq and who are recovering at Walter Reed Army Hospital. The man we bought our house from (and who also goes to our former church) was serving in Iraq and lost his lower leg and foot in Iraq on Memorial Day weekend this year. So the ladies in my guild made the blocks, my friend and I put them together and now I'm doing the quilting ... that is making it into a quilt. And I'm struggling with this quilt. I'm struggling with the prayer. I know he will like the quilt ... I know it will be meaningful for him. But it's breaking my heart.

This happened once before. I started out making a lap quilt for my uncle who had been put in a nursing home with Parkinson's Disease. But he died before I could finish it. So I made it bigger and gave it to our local police department so they would have it to give to a child who was being separated from his or her parents in a stressful situation. It was hard making the quilt when it was going to my uncle ... because it made me cry, because I missed my real uncle so much. I did do a lot of grieving tho. But when I was making it to give to a stranger, it was easier somehow and I could pray more and it didn't hurt so badly.


Blogger Maggie said...

Beautiful quilt.

7/26/2005 08:41:00 PM  

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