Friday, May 04, 2018

Cultivating Hearts for a Bountiful Harvest

Last summer, I had started praying that there might be an opportunity for me to serve at church which would involve using my gifts and things I feel good at. I do serve at church but it has not been in ways that I really have felt like I'm using gifting.

Then we went camping with friends and my sweet friend had been asked to help with the Ladies Prayer Breakfast that was going to be part of our Missions Conference. She asked me to be her assistant and I was grateful for this answer to prayer! We were in charge of table decor and making gift boxes for each of the missionary women in attendance.

As our planning went on, we ended up doing the table decor for the entire event and switching it up for different things. It really worked well being able to use bits and pieces in different combinations. I don't have pictures of all the combinations but will share a few photos here today.

In thinking about our theme, we kept coming back to this verse about the harvest -

John 4:35, "Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look on the fields, 
that they are white for harvest."

Once we had this verse in mind - we chose a theme: Cultivating Hearts for a Bountiful Harvest

Then we thought of trying to use as much white as we could and also keep our expenses as low as possible! The stage decor was all free - I brought a cabinet and chair from home plus the tub and lantern. The galvanized bucket was in my closet and adding the theme to my letterboard made a simple tie in. I had received the flowers for a CC thank you a couple of days before the breakfast so I put them in a canning jar and shared them for the morning!
Cotton was perfect in so many ways: it is white, ties in with our harvest theme, is southern and ended up being free because of a family connection that my friend in charge had. It made a big statement in a very large room and was just a great option for us. 

For the serving spaces, we used more cotton in containers we already had:

Table centerpieces were thrifty too! We found the galvanized buckets in a closet at the church as well as the burlap runners. The maps covering the buckets were collected from friends, family and rest areas! More cotton filled the buckets which sat on top of wood slices that we have in abundance with downed trees here in the south. Oyster shells were scrubbed and bleached and made another free white local touch to the arrangement. The only thing we bought for this was the large vintage maps underneath which were from Amazon

The hoop art added a little bit of color from the fabric wrapped around the edges and it made a nice take home for each table hostess as our thanks for her service that morning. 

We borrowed globes and put a grouping in a couple of places on the stage and hung a cotton wreath {from a friend's house} on the podium. 

Everything here was borrowed or from my house! A little welcome at the front door!

Now for the gift boxes we made for each of the missionary women - we wanted them to be meaningful and special but also practical. And we wanted to do handmade as much as possible so it was very personal.

Brown kraft lunch boxes were the perfect option to put our gifts in. Not too big and not too small - they were just the right size. We ordered a cotton stamp on Etsy and stamped the box to tie it in with our theme and simply tied with red/white twine. 

Inside, we included one of the hoop art shown on the table centerpiece, a beeswax candle, salt shaker, dishcloth and ornament. We also had a bookmark in there which included verses that went with each item.

Isaiah 49:6, "I will make you a light of the nations so that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth."

Colossians 4:6, "Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person."

John 15:3-4a, "You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you."

It was really a joy to be able to work on this project and develop a friendship in the process! So grateful for how God answered my prayer of being able to serve in an area of gifting!

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Agnes said...

Monica, this is beautiful, what an amazing work, congratulations.
Hope the gathering was fun.

Bevy @ Treasured Up and Pondered said...

wow!! Beautiful!!! and Meaningful!!

*carrie* said...

Great job, Monica!

Beautiful, meaningful, resourceful. Turned out great, and I'm sure the ladies felt cared for!

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness, Monica. How beautiful, lovely, and meaningful. (Yes and resourceful too!)
You are SO talented and I love how you use your talents to bless other people and serve the Lord. I'm sure this was a lovely and meaningful event.
God Bless you my dear, as you serve Him in so many ways.
Love you, Grandma

Linda said...

It all looks wonderful and memorable. I'm sure the ladies will feel blessed to attend. :)

Mom said...

Well done!! This turned out beautifully, and I'm sure was appreciated by all those in attendance. I love how you used available resources and tied it all together with Scripture! :)

Mrs. Chrissy T said...

Such beautiful detail and such heart and thought into it all. As a mission lover and once mission worker I am sure they were so blessed.

Down Cedar Lane said...

Please share more on this! DIYs...maybe what you talked about. Love every bit of this!