The Healing Touch of a World of Quilters & Friends
A quote from Gratefulness.org fell into my email inbox this morning:
“The more alert we become to the blessing that flows into us through everything we touch, the more our own touch will bring blessing.” -David Steindl-Rast, A Listening Heart
There’s a lesson for Quilters there, a lesson many of us already know, but perhaps haven’t been able to articulate as beautifully as David Steindle-Rast.
Like Christians or Bass fishermen or NASCAR fans, Quilters are a nation unto themselves. And like any nation, there are many sects, many colors, and as many different clubs and levels of proficiency and commitment as you can imagine.
There are Quilters who like to accomplish. Quilters who love to socialize. Quilters who love the process, the giving, the quest, the recognition, the adventure. There are Quilters who love the meditative quality of a needle plied. Quilters who join group after group, class after class, who churn out work of comfort and beauty and pour their love out to all within their circle. There are quilters who have a love of beauty that is so strong that they cannot resist owning a small piece of it for themselves in the form of printed cloth, whether they turn that cloth into a project or whether they fold it lovingly and place it on their shelves for safe keeping, they find their joy there.
Most quilters are very tactile. Watch a committed quilter as she wanders through her favorite shop, listen for the delighted quiet gasp of indrawn breath, and then watch as she reaches out to lovingly stroke the fabric. She can’t help it, she must touch it, as though her hands can absorb the color and form, her palms drink in beauty and peace.
A quilt show is a place of torture for me. You aren’t allowed to TOUCH. I walk around with my hands shoved into my pockets, whenever you can hear a gasp of wonder escape my lips you’ll see my shoulders twitch and my elbows jerk outwards, begging me to free my hands for one small touch. The experience seems incomplete, like looking at a slice of chocolate cake and then telling yourself you were able to truly savor the whole of the cake from absorbing it through your eyes. Torture.
Quilters understand the power of a quilt to heal. Whether the quilt is made from hand-dyed fabrics, deliciously combined and meticulously sewn into a work of true art and form; whether the quilt is awkwardly, but enthusiastically sewn by the hands of a newborn Quilter; or whether the quilt is made from laboriously gathered remnants from the wardrobe of a loved one passed on — no matter where that quilt came from, who pieced it, or even what the intention of the maker was when she started out, that quilt can heal.
You have the power to heal hearts with your gifts. You are a blessing from God, keep this knowledge in your heart and let the healing power that is within you flow. There is an endless stream of healing power, you cannot run short of blessings, God will continue to provide that blessing as long as you continue to allow your heart to reach out with whatever gift you have to share.
I don’t want to leave my non-quilting Sisters behind, I want you to know – to really KNOW – that you, too, have the power to heal hearts with the beauty of the gifts that flow from you. A smile, a hug, a beautifully crafted meal, a loving prayer, a kind word — whenever you create beauty, however you craft kindness, wherever you see a need and you work to fill that need, you create more healing than you can ever realize, ever understand.
Know this. Know this and be grateful. Be happy, be blessed and, most importantly, Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow.