As a introvert, I am not always the most creative person when it comes to planning extrovert-type things. And church can be FULL of extrovert-type things! Even as a pastor's wife, I don't always feel equipped to host exciting parties, showers, or events in my church for the ladies. I want them to have fun, but--what to plan?
I decided several years ago that *maybe* I could combine my God-given, introvert gifts with an extrovert activity--our annual ladies' Christmas party. I decided that first year to take a vintage sequin ornament I had on my tree, handmade by my great-grandmother, and teach the church ladies how to replicate it. At first I was afraid it was a total disaster, because the craft took much longer than I anticipated. But soon I realized that the ladies were happy and relaxed, chatting and working on their ornaments. It had been a success after all--even after three hours of crafting!
In subsequent years, I decided to make the Christmas ornament craft our special annual tradition. (And I also tried to cut down on the assembly time!) Of course, we still have gift exchanges, games, devotionals, and other traditional things; but every year we also make a brand new ornament. We started calling it our "Church Ornament Collection", and the ladies look forward to finding out what design we will make each year. They love adding to their collection, and when new or visiting ladies see what we have created over the years, they get excited, too.
So far, we have made an angel sequin ball, Mary and Joseph clothespins, a glass ball cupcake, and a hymnal page snowflake. We always make sure there are a variety of different colored supplies so the ladies can choose to create an ornament that will match their decor. Each year, when we trim our trees with the ornaments we created together, memories rush back of the chats and laughter we shared while making them. This year we will create our fifth annual Church Christmas ornament, but shhh--the design is still a secret!
Why not make 2016 the first year of your "Church Ornament Collection"?
About the Author:
Suzy Vanhoose is the wife of Pastor Danny Vanhoose from Grace Independent Baptist Church in the suburbs of Philadelphia. They have four sons, and have served at their church for over fourteen years. Suzy is also a high school teacher at a local Christian school. When she isn't busy with church, school, and family, Suzy enjoys reading books, writing poetry, baking, and anything else that isn't housework.