Friday, May 5, 2017

Cards and Words for Love ~ by Shirley Corder

A Fruitful Hobby

Many years ago, I made cards as a hobby. I ran a small card-making group within the church, called Cards 4 Luv.

Once a month we got together to create cards especially for a place of safety in a neighboring suburb. Our goal was to show love for the children who had been removed from their homes for different sad reasons.

Once a month we posted off a card to each child in the home, just to tell them we loved them. They mattered. Life might suck for them right now, but God loved them more than they could imagine—and He had a plan for them.

We signed each card, "Your secret friend."

We never met any of the children, but I was in frequent contact with the lady in charge. She would phone me to say a child had gone home, or a new child had arrived and give the details. One of us would immediately send off a ready-made card to the new child welcoming him or her to our list and telling them to expect a card each month.

The housemother would also tell us if a child was sick or needed a cardie hug from our Cards 4 Luv store, and we would post a card immediately. We all sent them cards on their birthdays, so they had about 6 or 7 cards in their post alcove on their special day.

A New Look at Cards

Recently, I took up card-making again, but this time purely as a hobby. I'm part of a bigger group of ladies that meet once a month, and sometimes on a Saturday in between. We learn a new technique each month, so I'm constantly working at improving my craft.

It is a source of amazement to me how we all follow the same instructions, cut to the same dimensions, use similar tools, and yet we come out with such a selection of lovely but different cards.

Isn't there a lesson here for us? God has made us using the same techniques. He's given us the same body parts. We all have the same organs (unless we've had some removed of course!) and the same material keeping them all together. We call that skin. Some have black skin, some brown, some yellow, some white . . .

We have different hairstyles and texture, some from birth and some through bottles or salons. Although we were all made the same, we all look so different.

Our reaction to various situations differs, and we communicate with different mannerisms.

We are different from other animals in the way we handle our emotions. A word (or card) of love or encouragement helps us feel good. A harsh word or action causes our feelings to plummet.

Sometimes those of us in the card group mess up one of our creations. The temptation is to stamp our feet and throw the offending article in the trash. But we know that sometimes out of our mistakes can come something beautiful. So we cut, trim, add or subtract to the card, and very often we produce something we are truly proud of.


Words of Love

  • What will you do with your words (or cards) today? Is there some way you can use them to build up people? Will you pass on positive messages of encouragement to them?
  • Will you pay special attention to the unlovely person, the unhappy teenager or the angry older lady? See what you can do to sweeten their day. You may be thrilled with the outcome of your efforts.
  • What can you do today to bring joy or show love to someone you'll be in contact with? What can you write today that will later bless someone you may not ever meet?
  • I'd love you to share your ideas. Please add your thoughts in the comment section below.


SHIRLEY CORDER lives on the coast of South Africa with her husband, Rob. She has recently embarked on a series of eBooks titled, Out of the Shadow.
Available now:Naomi, Beloved Mother-in-Law  Eve, Mother of All
Miriam Part 1, Devoted Sister

Strength Renewed: Meditations for your Journey through Breast Cancer contains 90 meditations for those facing cancer.

Please visit Shirley through ShirleyCorder.com, where she encourages writers, or at  RiseAndSoar.com, where she encourages those in the cancer valley. You can also meet with her on Twitter or FaceBook.

22 comments:

  1. Such a lovely post .I think showing you care can have a magical effect on a child.Lovely lessons shared.

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    1. Thank you Amrita. Great to have you visit us.

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  2. A wonderful reminder, Shirl. Thank you so much for sharing. It's so easy to forget what an impact an act of love and kindness can be on those around us!

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  3. Thanks Lisa. Yes, it is easy to forget.

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  4. I tend to be a bit too direct in my speech. Today, I am meeting a group of friends and I know at least one of them is struggling with something. Your post is a great reminder for me to listen and be gentle. Thanks, Shirley.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by, Corinne. I do hope your meeting with your friends went well.

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  5. Indeed, words can do so much more, they can heal and they can hurt. Cards4Love is a wonderful idea! I can imagine what it is like to get an anonymous card filled with love!

    Shubhangi @ The Little Princess

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    1. Hi Shubhangi, Thanks for the visit. The housemother told us that towards the end of the month the kids used to race home after school and check their post boxes. That made it so worth while!

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  6. In this day of e-mail, real physical cards mean so much, especially to kids who don't get piles of junk mail. Great idea.

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    1. Thanks LeAnne. You're right. A physical card today is a rarity and is so much more personal than a stack of 'likes' on Facebook!

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  7. Hey Shirley.
    You are doing a great job. It's so impressive.
    The miss the card culture. The feelings attached were definitely beyond description.
    Would try making some.
    Thank you:)

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    1. Hi Navneet, so you obviously used to make cards? I must admit, now that I've got back into it, there's nothing quite so rewarding as looking at a finished creation and knowing YOU made it!

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  8. This is a very heart touching post Shirley. Helping others whom we haven't even met is a thoughtful idea. I feel God has sent us all with a message to convey to others.

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    1. True, Geethica. We all have different ways of expressing ourselves, and we all have different friends. If only we would take this seriously!

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  9. This is such a wonderful idea - something so small can mean so much to a child, and could make the difference between a child giving up in despair or being encouraged enough to continue and, eventually, thrive. Making your own cards also allows messages that you just can't find in professionally made cards. Alana ramblinwitham.blogspot.com

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    1. Yes Alana, you're so right. It gives you such satisfaction to see the finished article. And for the recipient, it means so much. When I had cancer, I received literally hundreds of cards - but the ones that meant the most to me were ones that had been created just for me!

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  10. What an awesome idea, Shirley. I bet those cards just made the child's day. :)

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    1. Hi. Yes, you're right. The housemother reported back to us how the kids used to race home at the end of the month in case their "secret friend" had been in touch.

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  11. I don't know if I ever knew about the card ministry to the place of safety. It is a lovely idea though.

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    1. Debs, we ran it for several years in Krugersdorp. Sonia, Linda, and a couple of others including one man were part of the group. It was most rewarding. Thanks for the visit!

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  12. Shirley, I love writing and receiving real mail. This is a great post about a great ministry. Thank you for sharing.

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  13. Thanks for your comment, Hope. Here in S.Africa we are blessed indeed if we receive a card or letter bia snail mail as our postal service is not reliable.

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