Those who have been reading my posts for a year or more may remember that each year I have made a banner for the church foyer on a theme selected for the year.
It all began five years ago when it was decided to hold a "Rally Day" ... kind of a church equivalent to back-to-school night ... In September members begin to return from holidays in their own countries and newly assigned-to-Tokyo-expats and students arrive, looking for a church home.
Once upon a time, the Stewardship Ministry team began an event to introduce those people (and even more long-term members) to activities and service opportunities within the church community. We chose a theme, created a booklet with activity descriptions and contacts, and held a rally where members could answer questions about those activities. (and maybe even join in or contribute).
The committee at the first event created a very large paper "poster" and taped it to the wall in the entry foyer ... patio ... genkan ... a covered area between the outside and inner doors. Well, that poster stayed for a whole year becoming torn and very ratty. Therefore, the next year, being on the stewardship committee, I offered to make a banner which might be more attractive and hold up better.
The past four years I have worked with the committee and helped by making a banner each year. Often I am handed a design made by someone else and had to tweak it to make it work. Often all four banners are hung in a row in the entry.
The new "Stewardship" Elder does not like that term and has changed it to "Discipleship". We are to go out and bring in members ... forget about managing the church resources and finances. SO, that Elder found out I had been making a banner every year and Thursday I had an e-mail asking for a banner with the theme, "Become part of the fabric of TUC" Well, the time is a bit short but I said I would do my best. Actually, I found it a bit of an exciting challenge because the membership comes from all over the world and I began to go through my stash hunting up printed cottons from all over, India, Africa, Britain, Australia. China, Indonesia, and woven cottons rough and fine from all over. I cut out 63 four-inch squares, and though it was a hodge-podge of unrelated colors and patterns, sewed them together for the banner background.
The church had recently changed their logo so I thought the addition of that ... along with the words might make an interesting hanging.
Meanwhile, Friday, another e-mail came from the Elder asking about the dimensions and configuration of the proposed banner. As this person attends TUC regularly, I was a bit taken by surprised that over the past four years, none of the banners has been taken note of by that person. I therefore explained the history and results of the past five years. Then, I went back to work on the project.
OH NO! I got another e-mail last night saying that person wanted the entire phrase, arranged in a certain manner(two lines)! Suddenly the seven words with 26 appliqued two-inch letters was to become fifteen words with 67 appliqued letters ... meaning they would all have to be an inch high or less in order to get them to fit. Now, if that person could pass by those banners every Sunday and not see a banner saying "Many Hands, One Body" how would someone stop and read fifteen words in small print? Going on would be a waste if time and energy.
I apologized for my miss-understanding in reply e-mail and my husband offered to make that person a large poster with the preferred design and wording. Today a response came back that someone else will do the artwork, Paul is off the hook, and if I finish up the banner, they will find a place to put it.
The pressure is off. I will finish this as I wish, knowing there are many who pass by and never notice those hangings. I may as well satisfy my own artistic ideas and there will be one person satisfied ... well, maybe two because my husband thought it was a win as well. Sometimes I wonder if God is looking down and scratching His head ... or even laughing at what His "disciples" come up with.