On Friday before everyone arrived, Karen and I walked to the amphitheater on the camp grounds. We sat on the wall there and talked about anything and everything. I listened as Karen described her vision of bringing church right here in the open air, pointing out there was a pulpit.
There is something about the still of the woods, the home of creatures unlike us, one of God’s many thrones.
Karen and I know He brought us together for ministry. What we don’t know is how or when. Karen lives in Mississippi. I live in Pennsylvania.
This weekend at Camp Sonrise Mountain was ordained by Him.
He arranged it so Karen could come, that He could show off through her. Her voice, an angel’s. Her spirit, generous.
What Karen and I (really all of us) need to remember is that until God brings us to where His vision is, we are in training.
That molding and shaping, strengthening our core where I Am lives, lessening ourselves.
We have to learn to live in reliance upon what we saw in the vision, not simply live in the ecstatic delight and conscious reflection upon God. This means living the realities of our lives in the light of the vision until the truth of the vision is actually realized in us (Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest).
For the first time in public, Karen spoke of her childhood abuse by a community member. It is simply amazing how God lifted and carried her through. Karen shared also the story of her GranCassie, a Godly woman committed to praying for future generations in her family. GranCassie was a quilter and would gather in circles with her sisters making bonnets and aprons and quilts, sharing joys and sorrows.
When Karen and I talked about this aspect of her story before the retreat, Our Lord dropped a blessing in the conversation. I don’t think either of us can take credit for the idea.
Quilting squares for each woman.
A quilt for all to see Sunday morning.
We obeyed and brought the stuff. May I note, neither Karen or I are very crafty.
After lunch (Saturday), I noticed many squares were already adorned with words, pictures, His supernatural peace.
Wow, I thought. I better get to work.
Then … God blessed again … and again … and again …
Both Annette and Stacey, the main organizers for the retreat, asked me what I planned to do with the quilt after it was all tied together.
To be honest, I hadn’t thought that far ahead. My heart and soul received what the Lord gave, which was for each woman to speak to Him about forgiveness in their lives.
I am not sure who was talking in our little huddle. I offered the quilt to be auctioned off, added as a ticketed item. Ladies could buy tickets if they wanted to bring it home. The money at this point was going to help a cause (don’t remember which one, you will find out why later).
Settled. The Forgiveness Quilt would have its own bag, and someone would take it home with her. Whomever put tickets in that bag would have to listen for their number when the calling began.
Sort of at the same time I was talking with Stacey and Annette, someone retrieved a hair dryer to blow dry the painted squares.
In the meantime, I tried to assist the tying of the dry ones.
You know how we each get our own giftings?
A Godly woman named Tammy was at the helm of the quilting crew. If I had to guess, Tammy has been creating something ever since her fingers knew what to do. She had excellent help, though that did not include me.
I simply took pictures.
The women with the gift for quilting type things had determined the pattern of squares (how many across and that we would need one blank in each corner to balance it out).
I observed the swift hands joined in purpose. Slyly untying my attempts, Tammy whisked the string back through the four corners as if nothing was ever out of place.
It was beautiful to watch.
Today God led me to Exodus:
In preparing the tabernacle, men and women were called to use their skills. I can only imagine God’s tears as He watched women masterfully spin goat hair and fine linens.
Every skilled woman spun with her hands and brought what she had spun-blue, purple or scarlet yarn or fine linen. And all the women who were willing and had the skill spun the goat hair. The leaders brought onyx stones and other gems to be mounted on the ephod and breastpiece. They also brought spices and olive oil for the light and for the anointing and for the fragrant incense. All the Israelite men and women who were willing brought to the Lord freewill offerings for all the work the Lord through Moses has commanded them to do (Exodus 35:25-29).
I will break here. Honestly God’s love is so incredible and overwhelming. Check back tomorrow for the continuation in Part 3.
I am praying the blogs posts come together for a united conclusion because if there is one word I could use to describe this weekend, it would be unity. Of one mind, of one spirit, the body of Christ. I truly don’t know how many more posts there will be. I will keep writing as He leads.
In case you missed it today, 5 minutes of Gratitude for Thankful Thursday is up on the ministry page https://Facebook.com/jdibble4Him
If you like to read poetry, there is a new post at https://faithhopeandpoetry.blog
Have a blessed evening.