Today is my mother’s birthday and she is celebrating in Heaven. Loss and grief are hard, the loss of a mother is profound. The other weekend I was talking with a friend about loss. The loss of our mothers. I told her about the way my mother died a few days after having a massive brain stem stroke. I spoke about the suddenness of it all and how my life changed forever with her passing. I told her there were so many things I still needed to ask her and so many questions I have that only she knows the answers to. She told me that it really was best she went that way for her but it is hard on those left behind. She is right. My mother and I were very close and every day I think of things that I want to ask her, a recipe, a memory, a question about something we did and yet I can’t.
Ramona Richard’s book, My Mother’s Quilts is about her mother who was a master quilter. Quilting was her mother’s passion and the quilts all had a story. Ramona’s mom did not die unexpectedly and she was able to tell her daughter that she wanted the quilt she made with her mother’s handkerchiefs on her coffin instead of flowers. She was able to share the stories behind the quilts and now Ramona is passing them on in this book. This book is made up of the stories of the quilts and a matching devotion that shares the message of God’s grace and faithfulness. Every chapter begins with a Bible verse and ends with a prayer starter. The lessons of the quilts are applicable to anyone’s life. There are fundamental lessons of honoring the lives of those that have gone before us, accepting the flaws in the people we love, accepting one another and so many more.
At the end of the book Ramona shares that she is finishing a quilt that her mother worked on until her eyesight and stamina started to wane a couple of years before her death. She found the bow tie quilt in a white sack on the top of her mother’s closet. The quilt was almost finished, it just need the last few squares to be quilted and the binding attached. Ramona sat with the quilt and knew she wanted it finished. Her first thoughts were to ask someone to finish it but then she realized that she needed to do that.
Ramona is not a quilter but she said quilting is in her blood and this is her mother. She thought that we may be quick to let other people do the work we need to, teach our children about life and faith, take care of loved ones and volunteering where we’re needed. Scripture reminds us that we won’t be judged on the earthly things we accomplish. Instead, God looks at our heart and how we lived our beliefs. So while Ramona’s stitches are not as tiny or as straight as her mother’s, finishing the quilt is her way of saying, “You ran a great race. Thank you, Mom. I’ll take it from here.” To learn more about Ramona visit her website.
The last prayer starter asks the Lord to help us remember that one of the best ways we can honor those that came before us is to continue sharing all that they have given to us. Amen
Win A Quilt Contest!
Win one of the quilts featured in #MyMothersQuilts by Ramona Richards. Also up for grabs: loads of other prizes including quilting hand warmers, coloring books, and 25 signed copies of Ramona’s book. Winners will be emailed after the contest ends on June 30, 2016. Click the image to enter!