Sometimes I forget how much God knows about us. Psalms 139 says He has searched us and known us. He knows when we sit down and when we rise up, he even discerns our thoughts from afar. It isn’t surprising to Him that I don’t enjoy ice cream as much without rainbow sprinkles or that I was fascinated by other cultures before I had ever even left the country. He literally knitted us together with all of our likes and dislikes, our desires and our interests. I firmly believe He gets glory from Every. Single. Quirk. Isaiah 43:7 tells us that He formed and made all of His sons and daughters for His glory. That’s the design and oh, what a great one it is!
I was reminded of this very thing when I heard that God had placed, in a little girl named Avalon, the love of reading and a fascination with The Little House on the Prairie. He had placed in her mother, Shanin, creativity and the desire to give. Of course, God being God and all, He got glory from these two ladies by using the wonderful qualities He placed within them. “How,” you might be wondering? Well, crazy enough, through these very specific characteristics of a mother and a daughter, He is building a library for the new Arise Christian School children in N’gombe compound in Zambia.
“Wait. Because a mother and a daughter love The Little House on the Prairie, a library is being built for school children in Zambia…” YUP. God is quite the artist in creating His children. Check out this email to some of her friends from Shanin:
I wanted to let you each know about an exciting new adventure that Avalon (my 9 year old daughter) and I have started. Last year we began making Prairie Rag Dolls with leftover sewing scraps (after hours of reading and watching our very favorite series of all time— Little House on the Prairie). They turned out pretty cute and we were encouraged to start selling them. While we did not feel led to sell them for profit, we did start praying about how we could use these Rag Dolls in a way that could honor the Lord. Through prayer and circumstances, we became aware of a ministry called Arise Africa. Many of you know about Arise Africa and the work they do to provide the medical, social and spiritual needs of the people and children of Zambia— all in the name of Christ. Arise has launched the Arise Christian School, which provides a Christian based education to the children in the slums of Zambia. They are currently building a permanent campus. Much of the funding for the actual school building has been met, but many ancillary needs remain outstanding. The opportunity to build a separate facility for a school Library was made known to us. BINGO!!! God spoke to us both, and our hearts were deeply stirred. What a perfect opportunity to use our little Rag Dolls— to merge two of our favorite things:READING and making DOLLS. As such, our family has “Adopted the Project" to fund the building and establishment of the Arise Christian School (ACS) Library.
And thus, we have created RAGS to WISHES, a charitable initiative that will go towards funding the ACS Library. We have created 3 separate RAGS to WISHES products:
1) Prairie Rag Doll Kit - $12
2) Wooden Doll Stands- $5
3) Completed Prairie Rag Doll- $16
All net proceeds from our RAGS to WISHES creations will go toward funding the ACS Library. The Prairie Rag Doll Kit comes with all the supplies needed to create your own Prairie Rag Doll with your daughter, grand-daughter, niece, etc… It also comes with instructions and a little bit of history about “WHY we are doing WHAT we are doing.” Our goal is to use our “scraps or rags” and turn them into fulfilled “wishes" for these precious children in Zambia. May the Lord continue to make ‘beauty from ashes”…...
Let me know if you have any interest in grabbing a KIT or DOLL — they could make sweet Christmas gifts and are a great way to have a meaningful conversation with your daughter about the other side of “our" world.
Shanin and Avalon Wilburn”
Crazy, right? Not really. God is in the business of using us in EVERY WAY to be His hand and His feet. If you would like to purchase one of these items from RAGS to WISHES in order to support these two incredible ladies and Arise Africa, you can place an order under the "special instructions to seller" section of paypal and purchase at this link: paypal.me/RagsToWishes
You can also venmo money and order instructions to seller at this username: @PrairieRagDolls
The Rag Doll Kit: $12
The Wooden Doll Stand: $5
The Completed Rag Doll : $16
One doll available within each single kit.
Shanin and Avalon, you are truly a picture of Gods work in each of our lives! Thank you for reminding me that every part of who I am was created for HIS glory. May we all be His hands and His feet today.
Still figuring out the rainbow sprinkle thing,