Apr 9, 2013

Prayers Flags: The Simplest of Things Can Carry Great Love

...for they carry loving energies, touch anothers heart, and generate connections for healing.

This, my second little prayer flag made from this fabric in just a very few minutes..but with so much love...put into every bit of it. This one was made for a friend's birthday.  I wrote her that it needed to hang outside if she had a place for it, and to let the elements transform it, as it was meant to change and to transform. For nothing stays as it is. Nature has a way of being and doing through all of the seasons of our lives.

She wrote me that she just loved it, and it is hanging in the gazebo of her rose garden. And it gives me such happiness to know that its simplest bits and raw edges and little hanging strings can be touched by the elements, the sunshine and the shadows, the morning dew, and the evening's mystery. The winds can carry its love,  and all of my prayers and the prayers of all who see it here, there, and anywhere...send all of our prayers out in the world.

It was this dear friend's son that was hit by car on April 15th of last year. He was 32 years old, happy, and living a good life. Just walking across a marked and flashing light pedestrian crosswalk, an almost 90 year old man who admitted that he saw the lights, saw the crosswalk sign..but did not see this young man......and kept on going ....kept on going, until he plowed into him and sent his unconscious body flying across time... and into space.

This young man, who had struggled for years to find his place in the world and now had just found it. He had a job he loved, co workers who loved him, a family that loved and supported him, new nieces and nephews....to someday see and love....and a lot of good to do in this world. Now, he suffers the severe aftermath of this senseless tragedy.

I've known this young man's mother since 1968, when she lived across the hall from me in our college dormitory. I've known his dad, since his mom began dating him a few years later. I was a bridesmaid at her wedding, I was there when she adopted him and brought him back from Korea to live with their family.

She is one of my longest, closest, and dearest of friends.I have shared her journey as she raised him, and two other children to adulthood. Watched their triumphs and their struggles. Been part of the prayer chains when he was hit by a car, the first time at age 12.....riding his bike. He was hit then, and in a coma for months and suffered physical deficits he had to overcome........and did.

Some times you wonder...how can so many tragic things happen to one human being?  And you look at their pain, and their families pain, and you have nothing left in you but praise that they are even alive.

For there is one thing that I have learned as I did years of my own form of lay hospice, sitting at the bedsides of dozens, and dozens, of those who are dying and even those who have just died..it is that everyone wishes only for a purpose for their own lives and the lives of those they have loved.

We all need to believe that our lives..the good, the bad, and the often quite and very ugly....have made a difference. A difference in someone's thoughts, someone's life..and maybe even as part of a far great pattern..a different in this world. For all of our patterns, all of our lessons, all of our examples and changes and transformations..all of them go out like ripples and touch others.

And any, and all, good that we can do...no matter how small..transforms each and everyone of us. No matter what the obstacles or challenges we face.

My friend and her husband have fought a hard and challenging fight to get the best possible care for their son. They have battled doctors and care givers, and care homes, and now have him in a place of love, and healing. A good place where people who truly love, and care for him ...are working with him and will continue to do so for the rest of his life.

We always, always pray for the care givers..for it is their love, their support, and their understanding of connection that bridges the gap between the words....and between the worlds.

I prayed all last year and into this one for this family and for this son, while I was also praying for my own brother,  his wife my sister-in-law, for my other brothers, and my other sister in laws, who now care for our mother in our childhood home in Alaska. And I pray for all families who suffer the seemingly senseless...pain and suffering, death and dying and the loss of who we knew our loved ones to be. For we are all one, one big earth family..all facing so many challenges, so many illnesses, accidents, so much darkness that fights to find its way back into the light, into the the truth of connection, and hope, and the pure epiphany of understanding.

My friend loved her prayer flag and will hang in her rose garden where it will ripple in the winds of time and change and send prayers of gratitude for all that we do have and not anger for all that we do not.

And the 90 year old man who was driving and hit her son and has now changed his life forever?Pray for him, for surely this must have destroyed his own life, as well. Pray, that he will now, finally, give up driving.

Pray that my friends family can learn to forgive this simple but oh so huge error in judgment. An error that has cost their son all but his life, and the love that surrounds him.

And yes, I still believe in miracles, for I have witnessed far too many of them..so I always pray for those as well. Miracles come in many shapes and sizes and sometimes, there are simply right there in front of us.  Kelly..for this young man is a Kelly, too... is a miracle. The other Kelly, and her mother, who got my other little flag below..they, too..are miracles. Keep praying for miracles and you will keep on finding them every where you look.

shown above:
the simplest of prayer flags, made with raw edges of fabric and strings to flutter in the winds of time. Inkjet printing on my home computer. Prayer flags are meant to be unfinished and imperfect..just like our own lives. And they are meant to be light so they can flutter and float as the winds carry our prayers to all corners of this world and beyond.

Praying for Miracles
Making Prayer Flags

Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska and all of her AAQI Quilting. Sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join in the Liberated Quilting Challenge and make or donate small art quilts to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) Help us change the world, one little quilt at a time!


IHaveANotion ~ Kelly Jackson said...

I can attest to the power of prayer and the beauty and hope that a prayer flag brings! Thank you Michele!!! My mother loves hers and she was brought to tears by your kindness.

Hugs, Hugs and more Hugs,

Michele Bilyeu said...

Oh, Kelly...you just tell your mother how very, very dear she is! Knowing that my little gift touched her heart just tells me just how much SHE could feel the love and the prayers that I am sending her! And it says just how tender she is right now and just how much all of us need to connect with her and with you and continue to sending love your way.

I keep you all in my thoughts and prayers. I know how challenging this all must be for your families and I can only say that so many of us truly care.

And thank YOU so very, very much for sharing this with me. These are the things that keep me going when life seems challenging! Big big hug to you and to your dear mother!

Lynne said...

What a beautiful post, Michele. So heartfelt!

Wendy said...

Such a beautiful and heartfelt post...so full of compassion for all those concerned. Your little prayer hangings are such a wonderful idea for those who need to know that someone cares.

Unknown said...

Hi Michelle! Thank you for sharing this story to us. I am very touched by your thoughtfulness and compassion for others. You are a very good person and I know people like you are going to be blessed with abundant blessings. God bless you! My family's prayers will be for your friend's son tonight.

Michele Bilyeu said...

Oh, thank you so very much, Wendy!

I am so delighted that you stopped by for a visit to my blog and very happy that you left such a dear comment.

Michele Bilyeu said...

Bless you, Lynne!

Michele Bilyeu said...

Thank you so very, very much, Erin! And thank you for stopping by my blog and letting your own loving energy connect with mine and the prayers for good that we all send out into the world for those in need.

Browndirtcottage said...

You expressed such heartfelt thoughts Michele.........you are inspiring.....