I learn to knit because I am afraid.
It's a day in early January and I've put off the learning for 13 months and I've finally decided that the only way to be brave is to choose to be brave.
Because I'm this woman born under a cloud of terror, and I'm still figuring it out, how to really live when you're afraid of failing, afraid of rejection, afraid of being who you are. Maybe the only thing I've figured out is this--there's no once-for-all cure for the broken place of a soul, only the daily choice to keep fighting for the life God has for us.
And maybe this, too--that Fear doesn't go away when you hide it in the closet.
No, the only way to send Fear packing its bags is to pull it right out into The Light, look it square in the eye, and do the very thing that Fear's declared we can't.
So I pick up the needles and I teach myself to knit and purl, cast on and bind off. Because the path of a courageous life, it's made up of a million little steps into a million little fears. And maybe no one understands how learning to knit can teach a soul to live.
Maybe I don't understand it either.
But God's this crazy pursuer Who pries open the eyes of the blind, and me, I'm the blind one more often than I'm not.
Is it any real mystery, then, that I've no idea what He's doing when I meet a woman in February who will show me how knitting can change a life?
Bernadette and I, we meet in the most impossible way--me clicking randomly and her writing soul poetry on a page of the big wide world. I'm captured and I'm held from that first happenstance reading of her words, and we exchange comments and emails and prayers.
Mostly, we exchange hearts.
And we both know it without one bit of uncertainty that God's behind all this Grace, and how can we doubt the extravagance of His love when He's given us both a soul sister we never knew we had?
Yes. We might be 817 miles apart and we might have spent a few decades without knowing who we were missing. But we know it now. We are sisters who've been found at last.
It's a day in July when I decide there's only one way to send my love across all those state lines. So I pick out the loveliest yarn, soft and delicate and perfectly blue, and I pick up my needles and I do the impossible.
I learn to knit lace.
It's only my third time knitting and everyone thinks I'm a bit out of my mind and I do have to rip it out at least a dozen times in that first week.
But I keep at it for five long months and every stitch becomes this labor in love, knitting yarn into beauty with patience and prayer and mostly just this straight-up stubborn persistence. And it really is the most beautiful thing I've ever created.
But I'm still this woman oblivious to what God's about to do and it's not until I wrap up my love and send this blue lace across 817 miles that I see what He's been trying to tell me all this time.
Because Bernadette, she holds my love in her hands and she writes the poetry of us and she points me straight to this: It's the holes in the lace that let all the light shine through.
It's the holes in the lace that make it beautiful.
I'm this foolish woman who learns to knit because she is tired of being afraid. And God, He's the patient One Who bides His time and waits quietly to reveal this one thing:
I might feel ragged and worn through, all the struggles of a life chipping away at the beauty of a soul. But I think maybe I'm really these endless tangled threads, and the needles of adversity and loss, they bore clean through me. I might be left with all these aching empty spaces, but God, He's the One holding the needles and He's knitting me into lace.
And when I'm held up to the Light, the beauty of what He's done might just bring us all to our knees.
Yes. This year's been about letting go, about loss, about leaning hard into God when everything else is being stripped away.
But maybe underneath all that it's really been about this--God emptying me out in the most beautiful way, His pattern emerging from all the heartache, and me becoming lace, knit together in the hands of a good God.
Yes. I think it's really true. All of us, we're being made into lace, knit together in the hands of the good God.
And He makes all things beautiful in their time.
Pattern: "Red Pepper" by Tanja Pessina, Free Download on Ravelry.com
Yarn: Cascade Yarns Alpaca Lace (100% Baby Alpaca), Color 1432 Sapphire Heather
Needles: Size 7