Thursday, December 03, 2009

Prayer quilt

I've got another quilt to make... This one I'm not happy to say is needed. I think I will be making a prayer quilt sometime in the next few days.

I have a neighbor that I see almost every morning when he walks his dog. He must be a few years older than I am and has never been married. He lives with his dog though he helps his sister run a small day service for the elderly. I've posted about him on my blog when he has brought me little things that he makes. He is shy but usually very cheerful. I don't know his real name... I call him Yumetaro.

Yumetaro told me in August that he was going for a checkup because maybe his ulcer had flared up. Well, you can guess where this is leading. It wasn't an ulcer. I could start ranting about what I think of the medical system but to make a long story short his scheduled surgery this week has been delayed and he needs to go for more tests later in December.

Here again, I don't know what I think is wrong with this. I often lose my sense of what is normal and what is outlandish. Why does it take so dang long for Japanese doctors to decide what to do when they have already determined that the big C is present? I have had three or four Japanese friends who have suffered from cancer and every single time, MONTHS go by before some real action is taken. Tests. More tests. And more tests. For heaven's sake! Just do something! One or two of my friends' results have been good, so the doctors know what they are doing, right? But one or two of my friends are gone so it is easy to say that if the medical system had been more decisive there would have been a different outcome. All of my friends, regardless of the outcome have felt despair, anger and helplessness during the months of waiting.

I wasn't going to get into bashing...

I asked Yumetaro if I could make him a prayer quilt. I have made quite a few of these but in one case the recipient took the offer to mean that he was a lost cause and there was no hope for him. People receive offers of prayer in different ways and in this case Yumetaro isn't Christian. I have prayed about this this week and wondered if this was stepping beyond being neighborly. "Coincidentally" I was given the Bible verse:

"We should consider the good of our neighbor and build up his character." Romans 15:2

I also was reminded that we are all given certain abilities and God wants us to use them to help others. We are to pass on to others God's many kinds of blessings.

Well, obviously I can't do much for Yumetaro medically. But I am a quilter with quilting abilities from God, resources at hand and belief in prayer. So I asked Yumetaro if I could make a quilt for him. A prayer quilt that would surround him in prayer when he goes to the hospital. He is so down and out that he just said that he's not Christian. And I said it didn't matter. And he said he was grateful for any prayers.

So I'm going to make Yumetaro a quilt and sew in lots of prayers.

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