God anointed Jesus:
“to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.”
Isaiah 61:2-3 NIV
Several years ago while shopping in Santa Fe, I found myself drawn to a local yarn store. Two magnets attract, what can I say? In the shop were all kinds of textures, fibers, and colors- a knitter’s dream come true.
A display caught my eye- one including a wool scarf made with soft yellow, subtle lilac, and sage green yarns. It was gorgeous- reminding me of a fresh spring day, complete with wild daisies and mountain iris.
As fresh and lovely as the spring colors were, my mind wouldn’t go there. Instead, I was drawn to the neutrals- black, white, and gray.
You see, I was in mourning- my color choices needed to reflect my feelings. I bought the yarns knowing why I needed them- the yarn would play a part in my healing process.
I began to knit the scarf pattern. I knit and knit and knit some more. I knit until I ran out of yarn- I didn’t care about the length.
As I got into the pattern’s rhythm, changing yarns every so often, and relaxing in a chair, the sadness, stresses, and future’s uncertainties all melted away. (Therapy without the expense of a therapist.)
I’ve heard other knitters, quilters, and crafters experience this, too. Meditative Therapy.
Mindless repetition- transferring stitches one needle to the next. Repeat, relax, slow down, think, and pray. One stops thinking about the stitches (no counting necessary) and instead allows the mind to go where it needs to.
As I mentioned before, I was knitting A LOT that summer. The yarn was lace weight requiring skinny size 2 knitting needles. It was going to take awhile to complete the project, but I looked forward to my meditative time- never in a hurry to finish.
Each time I brought my daughter to her horse lesson, I sat, watched, and knit. My worries, cares, and concerns floated away as I silently grieved the loss of a relationship.
Loneliness and confusion departed for a time. Burdens lifted, weariness- gone. All the sorrows I felt were knit right into that scarf, making something beautiful out of something heart-crushing.
Maybe you find yourself saddened lately- perhaps grieving about all of the recent changes you’ve been experiencing? Loss of a loved one, changes with work, suddenly homeschooling and uncertain futures? We may be left feeling low.
Giving knitting (or something else) a try may be just the thing to lift spirits. Mourn a loss, if need be. Healing is on the horizon my friend. God will make beauty from ashes, even if it ends up being a scarf.