Willela Douthat

Legacy Fund proclaiming what we believe, so that others will experience the opportunity to participate in the VISION and the MISSION of United Methodist Women.

As we begin to prepare for the 150 years celebration, we need to be grateful for FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE that two women felt in 1869. Can you imagine how precious 2 cents must have been for these women?

Begin to think how you can “Make It Happen” in 2019.

Apple Seeds: A Meditation
One day a woman noticed a new stall in the local market. God was in the stall.
“What do you sell here,” she asked? God replied, “All your heart desires.”
The woman was astounded. “Wow! I’ll have peace, joy and a nice house. Not just for me but for everyone and —”
God interrupted, “I think you’ve misunderstood. I don’t sell fruit here, only seeds.” God gives us seeds. What we do with them is up to us.

The Gift of Apples
John Chapman, known as Johnny Appleseed, left a legacy. He planted apple orchards throughout the Midwest in the early 19th Century. The seeds became trees, which bore fruit with seeds, which became trees that bore fruit with seed. He is still thanked by apple lovers today.

About 7,500 apple varieties grow worldwide, and 2,500 alone are grown in the United States. The apples are different in shape, size, color, flavor and growing season.

Some apples are crisp, some soft. Some are sweet, others tart. Some are good for pies, and others for sauce, bread, cakes, apple butter, jams and jellies. Some of us enjoy apple juice or cider. Some of us like eating just plain old apples.

Apples contain no fat, cholesterol or sodium. A medium apple provides about 95 calories of energy and about 17 percent of our daily recommended fiber. They contain more than 80 percent water and are rich in vitamins. What a wonderful gift God gave us.

Seeds . . . to look at them, are generally small, insignificant. It ’s difficult to tell by looking at a seed what it will produce. Seeds need to be planted, nurtured, protected and fertilized. Seeds hold within them the pattern for new life and the promise of something beautiful, useful, healthy. It may take many years for seeds to yield fruit. When the seeds of an apple are planted, it takes 8-10 years for the tree to bear fruit, but it is capable of producing fruit for as long as 100 years.

United Methodist Women members have a history of being in the business of planting, nurturing and fertilizing seeds. We have not always been sure of the results of our labor, but we are willing to work, having hope that our seeds will sprout and grow. We plant with generosity and gratitude because of the generous God who provided the seeds, the opportunity and space to sow.

Some of the fruit we bore may have been sweet and soft, or crisp and tart. Whatever the planted seed turned out to be, it was a product of our willingness to plant the gifts endowed to us from our extravagant God.

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9:6-12
6 The point is this: the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that by always having enough of everything, you may share abundantly in every good work.
9 As it is written,

“He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor; His righteousness[a] endures forever.”

10 He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.[b] 11 You will be enriched in every way for your great generosity, which will produce thanksgiving to God through us; 12 for the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God.

United Methodist Women are in the seed business. . . Planting, nurturing and seeing the harvest of serving others. We plant with Faith—Hope—Love with generosity and gratitude. We serve a God who has filled us with many blessings in Action. God is ready for us to experience many more blessings through our mission giving.

May whatever gift we give be given with a generous heart. Our legacy should be filled with a willingness to want to continue to share the witness of God’s Faith Hope Love in Action. Let us ask how we will bless our missions throughout the world for 150 more years.

Willela Douthat

150th_OFFICIAL_LogoLegacy Resources