I Am a Quilt


These days I feel like I’ve been thrown in the washing machine, twisting back and forth, back and forth, agitation at every turn and then holding on as the spinning makes the blood rush to my head and threatens to spin my life completely out of control.

But then comes a pause. A signal ending the cycle. A reminder that “though I am surrounded by troubles…the Lord will work out His plans for my life – for [His] faithful love…endures forever” (Psa. 138:7, 8 NLT). And I remember.

Somewhere along the way I started thinking I was a prom dress with delicately appliqu├ęd beads and lace and a tulle skirt flowing to the ankles and this rough agitation and spinning would send the beads flying and rip the tulle to shreds.

Photo credit: Rebecca Love Photography

But now I remember. I’m not a prom dress. I’m a quilt. Bits and pieces patched together in unlikely harmony to make up what I am. I’m not the kind that never gets used or hangs on a wall. I’m the kind that is a little quirky and gets jumped on and wrapped around and dragged on the floor and picnicked on and gets dirty.

So I need washing. And into the washer I go and twist back and forth, back and forth by the merciless agitator, and then spin and spin and spin.

And I am clean again.

This beautifully made quilt was laying on the bed in the room prepared for us in one of the homes where we stayed for three weeks in the Philippines. Below is the quilt label attached to the backing of the quilt. The label states, “Quilt machine pieced and quilted by: Nancy Christensen; Mont Vernon, NH 2003. I made this quilt as a fundraiser for Alex Hansen who is fighting a long battle with cancer. May this quilt bring joy and warmth to the new owner and a miracle for Alex!” The quilt was raffled and won by the Filipino woman we were staying with when she was living in New Hampshire with her New Hampshire native husband over ten years ago. It was one of the few things that made its way to the Philippines when they moved, and it has been giving “joy and warmth” to more than just its owner. It was such a comfort to me while staying in a new place for the season we were there.

Here We Go!

matt and lisa 2016

In a little over a week, Lisa and I will embark on yet another exciting, but terrifying, adventure. As my “cousin-in-law” Chris said, “every adventure is about 30% terror!” Easy for him to say. Truthfully, there is little risk without the unknown, and there is little faith without massive possibility of failure.

We might be scared sometimes or a lot of the time, and fear can seem overwhelming, but we are forced to be courageous. “Courage is fear holding on a minute longer,” according to General George Patton.

What we do at this point still takes courage, but it’s not what you think. What we do is dwell in the secret place of the Most High. He is our fortress and in Him do we trust. We abide in the shadow of the Almighty (Psalm 91).

The Next Step

We had the amazing privilege of serving for two years in Malawi, Southern Africa, with Pastor Chris Arman and his family. We grew daily, and we ministered and were ministered to by the wonderful people of  Malawi.

By the grace of God we are looking forward to our next step in ministry. We will be serving in church planting and discipleship ministry with Pastor Manny Harrison and his wife, Molly, in Dumaguete, Philippines.

We need and appreciate your prayers and always welcome your support in any way possible.

Much Love,

Matt and Lisa Sliva