She was an expert quilter with an eye for color and design, as you can see. When she had a spare moment, her hands were busy creating quilt after quilt. I wish I knew just how many she made. She loved making them for her children and grandchildren and even her great-grandchildren - for Christmas, for wedding gifts, or graduation. She didn't always need an occasion to go to the back room and bring out a quilt for someone in the family.
For as long as John David and I have been married, we've always had her quilts to warm us on cold winter nights. In fact, we used several of them so much that they are worn and put away as keepsakes. Both Deron and Andy have their own "Mawmaw quilts." The three pictured above will eventually become worn and frayed, but that just adds character to them. Faded colors, ripped seams, and worn edges just mean they've kept us, our children, and grandchildren cozy year after year. After all, there's nothing quite like snuggling under a homemade quilt, especially one made by a loved one who's no longer with us.
So, when I put them out to sun today, Mrs. Thaxton's talent as a quilter once again amazed me. In the sunlight, with the three of them grouped together, the quilts looked prettier than ever . . . like looking through a kaleidoscope of bright colors and varied geometric shapes. And after they've soaked up the sun's rays, they'll smell so fresh and clean. I'll bring them in and place one on each bunk bed. You see, the holidays and company are coming! The quilts will once again provide warmth for the three special people who'll curl up under them and sleep. They never knew Mawmaw, but it's almost as if her hands, the work-worn and arthritic hands that touched every inch of those quilts, soothes them to sleep and keeps them warm.
I've always loved quilts and include them in my list of simple country pleasures. I am thankful for those things - priceless things - that make my life richer by evoking good memories of people, places, and things. Today it was sunning my quilts. The simple things, however, usually speak loudest - if I take the time to listen. Today I listened and was reminded that we, like the quilts, have been lovingly pieced together - the Psalmist uses the word "knit" - by our Creator. We are each His specially designed Masterpiece, and we come in all colors, and shapes, and sizes! But we need the Son to shine down on us and in us. We need to find time to soak up His cleansing rays . . . His rays of peace and hope. Sometimes . . . no, often, we just need to find a quiet spot and "air out" our hearts and our minds . . . let Him clean us up, freshen up our attitudes, and rid us of "stinkin' thinkin'," as someone said.
Then we'll be ready to spread His warmth and comfort to others who need His healing touch.
"Lily of the Valley, let your sweet aroma fill my life.
Rose of Sharon, show me how to grow in beauty in God's sight.
Fairest of ten thousand, make me a reflection of your light.
Daystar, shine down on me; let your love shine through me in the night."
-composed by Steve Richardson, 1988-