Monday, June 1, 2009

Quilting Bee of Folks #11

Isn't that beautiful!!!!

Good morning all!! I've been away for a few days - recovering from an unhappy tooth. I think I'm back functioning and feeling human today!! So.... I have laid out some lovely apple strudel this morning and scones filled with berries or raisins. There is also yogurt and granola if you would prefer. Some lovely fruit and herbal teas, yummmmm, and as always some delicious coffee - Kona today.
I have racked a quilt full of grace today, one that requires many hands. Thank you for gracing us with your wonderful self today. Please pull up a chair.

I was pondering the word grace this weekend, a word with so many meanings, yet so very powerful! Here is the dictionary meaning...
grace (grs)n.
1. Seemingly effortless beauty or charm of movement, form, or proportion.
2. A characteristic or quality pleasing for its charm or refinement.
3. A sense of fitness or propriety.
a. A disposition to be generous or helpful; goodwill.
b. Mercy; clemency.
5. A favor rendered by one who need not do so; indulgence.

Well....I guess to me the most powerful part of this is number 5..although I'm not referring to the type that would be seen as indulgence so very much. But need. The types of things that are recognised by someone and filled for no other reason than being led to do so.

I think we often think of grace as something someone is genetically, you either are or you are not.. someone is graceful, full of grace, ballerinas are graceful. You know... not clumsy. But, the kind of grace I find the most amazing is the grace from the heart. I have been very blessed with grace over the last several years, sometimes it was just a little drip of honey, a hug, a small unexpected gift, sometimes, just that someone remembered me unexpectedly. Sometimes I have been given buckets full of the wonderful amber liquid!! Like when we were offered this house!!

I learned grace at some wonderful knees!! I am going to reprint this from an older post - as I think it is worth sharing again. Hope you don't mind.

I learned grace from Ola Mae. She came to our home in Tennessee twice a week to clean for my mother. I came along late in life for my parents, my Mom , although wonderful was in her early 50’s during these years and (I get it now) starting to do things in her life that fed her own soul. She was very busy. In the early 70’s in the South, being black was not an easy thing. There was still deep separation. Being from New York I was not prepared for this, nor did I understand why Ola Mae lived literally on the other side of the tracks in a shanty town. I was very fortunate to have been brought up in a very well off family. I have also experienced several years of deep poverty after my divorce. Knowing how it feels to be deeply poor & busy trying just to get by, her tolerance for me was amazing. I adored Ola Mae and it seems she felt the same about me. How she put up with this rich girl following her about the house, sometimes for hours, chatting her ear off is beyond me. But she spoke to me as though I was one of her own well loved children. She passed on her wisdom and soft words like gifts to me. My Mom and I went to her tiny home several times. My Mom took her eggs, garden produce and bags of clothing that no longer fit me. I seem to recall Christmas gifts for her children also. From the view point of someone with money and a good heart it seems like a good thing to do – and it is. But, what I did not learn until years later, how very hard it is to accept charity, no matter how well meaning the giver is. Again this woman of amazing grace, never let on if any of this was hard for her. What she gave me all those years ago was my guide through poverty. She never said it, but her grace as she offered us tea in her tiny humble kitchen taught me volumes.

I think in this busy world we forget just how very powerful a little grace is. As I read through the blogs everyday, I frequently see this word in action. Over and over again people who don't need to, maybe can't really afford to, have no real reason to... offer up grace to others who so dearly need it! Little drips of honey or big buckets! Lots of hands make quick work. Lots of worker bees here!!

So... my question for you today is....where do you offer up grace my bees? Would you like to share? What touches your soul, reaches out and asks your heart to offer up grace?

So... I'm off for some strudel and coffee - yummmmmmmmy. Thank you for being here today and offering me such wonderful grace with each and every comment! I do love my bees!! Namaste, Sarah


Sonia ;) said...

Im not sure Sarah, never thought of it before. Wouldnt know how answer that at all....I either have it and dont know it...or dont possess it at all....Ive never looked at it before....Hmmm

Sonia ;)

Anonymous said...

As always Sarah you touched my heart today. I hope I offer up grace with each kind word I speak, in my smile and actions.

Blessed Be.

Gail H. Ragsdale said...

Another wonderful post Sarah! Hope your tooth has recovered. That is misery for sure.

I offer grace to my best friend who is a fairly recent widow and so unhappy with how life is going right now. My heart aches for her and I try to offer her a shoulder to cry on and what little advice I feel comfortable with giving. It's hard giving advice as what works for you may not work for them.

Snap said...

Good morning, Sarah. Hope you are feeling better and not fighting with your tooth! Ick!

Grace -- I think it happens without thinking ... you just find yourself doing something 'nice'.

Hugs to you!

Holly said...

Wonderful! I'm graced by reading this. And, funny, in my post today, I answer this question before I knew you asked it. Loved this post today!

Renee said...

Sarah did you know that I absolutely love the feel of the word grace. Thank you for offering it to us today, on Josephine's birthday.

Love Renee xoxoxo

laughingwolf said...

sorry bout your toofy, sarah, no fun when you're in pain :(

thx for the goodies, i'll take a wee nibble here n there, gotta get my weight under control ;)

grace and blessings go hand in hand :)

Haunted Swamp Designs said...

The quilt is beautiful!
Grace.... some call me Grace. No not because I am Gracefull, but I do fall very gracefully!
Hope your toothy heals soon!

OldeAnnie said...

Hi glad you dropped by my blog for now I've found your wonderful blog! What an absolutely sweet story, and growing up in the rural south myself, I could have written something so very similar! Would love to learn more about your days in Cary and how you got out this way! ~~Annie

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

When reading your post I couldn't help but think of the old Seinfeld episode when Elaine was trying to take the place of Jackie Kennedy at some book publisher. She wasn't hired because she lacked the "grace" that Jackie O possessed. Grace comes in so many forms...the beauty of nature around us and the people who touch our hearts with effortless ease. The one thing that always strikes me with someone who exudes grace is the lack of ego. So for me...I am trying to loose any ego that may come out and do things solely from the heart and not from self gratification. Sometimes we never know the grace we bestow on others...and that is a good thing.

Holly said...

I came back for another visit. I wanted to re-read this. And, I forgot to tell you earlier that I adore, I mean really, adore this quilt. Love IT.

My Ola Mae was named Mary. She was the exact same spirit. And, we loved her. It was she, that my father turned to with thanks and a sigh of relief, when I got my first period. She was there and could go to the store to get what was needed and instruct me on what to do.

Mary. Before her was Martha who was with our family for many many years. And, we thought of her as family, too.

And, just like you, I've often wondered how hard it must have been to take our well meaning gifts and things. And, just like Ola Mae, taught you, these women taught me to be humble and accept a kindness when one is offered.

Sarah, I really love this post. It is full of grace.

Anonymous said...

Sarah, I so remember when you posted the story of Olla Mae before - the story has stuck with me and I think of it often. What a lovely post and what a lovely tribute!

Drop by my place tomorrow - there will be something there for you!

Cygnus MacLlyr said...

Even before I saw qa WORD of your'n, typed.. I saw the warmth.. the quilt... and saith to me own ears.."THAT'S BEAUTIFUL!!!and SUCH an ever-beautiful site, lady Sarah!

PLEASE, keep it up!



Sherry Byrum said...

Two things came to my mind, I try to encourage other artists and I have a very special friend (she will know who she is) and I think we give each other grace.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I read this fascinating!
And the coffee and strudel to go with my visit here.

Great post!

Kim said...

Oooh, what a lovely and heart warming story. I'm sure I couldn't begin to show the kind of grace you describe.

I simply hope to be there when someone needs me, to give thanks for my blessings and not to let my ego take over. I will ponder this some more, thank you Sarah :)

Kim x

Tumbleweed Trails said...

Just poppin' in to say hello. Sorry about your tooth. That's no fun at all.


Becky said...

Being raised in the Christian faith tradition, I was always taught that GRACE = God's Riches At Christ's Expense. GRACE also seems to have the quality of being an un-deserved action of love.
I find it is much easier to extend GRACE to others than to myself, especially when I need it most! It is then that my forum and blogging friends and communities extend that much needed GRACE to me! And I love you all for that!
Love & Light~
OM girl