Saturday, July 30, 2016

Knit 1, Pray Too

When we knit we follow a written pattern unless we are creating our own. Either way there's a universal way it's done. There are instructions of some sort that must be followed stitch by stitch to achieve the final result. We may vary in our method of knitting. I knit Continental style, which is actually the German method.  My working  yarn is held in my left hand and I "pick" rather than "throw" as in the English/American method. But still the knitting process is pretty much the same and our finished work looks the same no matter what method of knitting we've used. I think it's what we do while we are knitting that makes us truly unique as knitters. Those things that nobody but we ourselves know we routinely do.
If you stop and think about it, you know what I mean. Like me, I'm sure you have those things you do too. It's almost like our own inner built formula that we instinctively follow, especially for those of us who have been knitting for years now. Time goes by so quickly and I'm amazed when I realize I have been knitting now for thirty one years. I've been crocheting even longer. So I have definitely developed some habits at this point that I gravitate towards when I pick up my yarn and my needles or hooks.
The very first thing I always do, without fail, is put the kettle on. For me there's no knitting without a cup of tea. It's just part of the process. The part that is comforting, calming and centering. The next thing I do, if I am around the house by myself, is turn on an audiobook. I use the Play Away version with earbuds during the months I knit on the porch swing. If I can't actually read a book then I love to be read to. I love stories and books of all kinds. During the colder months I have my favorite chair or two to sit in when I knit inside the house. Sometimes I even sit in the kitchen on a sunny day with my knitting. 
Now, here's where things get very personal for me. I have a habit that I don't often share with others. As I knit or crochet, I pray for the person who will receive the item I am working on. Oftentimes so much of my work ends up being for someone I don't know and will never know because it gets sold online. Much of my work also gets sold at a Craft Faire and even though I meet these people face to face it can be such a frenetic scene of shoppers that at the end of each day it's not always easy to remember who bought what. Although I would like to say that I am a people person and I always have a sense when I am making certain things that they are for a specific person and when that particular item is sold I usually make a connection with the customer. Not only do I remember these people but they sometimes pop back up in my life. There is a reason for the things we are compelled to do with our time and talents. God always has a plan.
But as I said, while I am knitting I am praying. I love making baby items and praying for the babies who will wear them. Praying for their health and happiness and that God will guard and guide them in this world they have been so newly brought into seems like a good idea to me.
Sometimes I have the advantage of knowing either who the mommy to be is or the name of the baby so I can pray specifically for them. This purple hat is going to a friend of my daughters. Chelsea wanted a flower added to it to make it even more girlie. I make so many of these hats for gifts and to sell. They are popular because they are so easy to make for either a boy or a girl.
Just like the apple hat. I think it's a nice unisex baby hat as well. So, as I knit around and around I just keep praying. Then when an item is done my finishing touch is always one more prayer. I lay my hands on it and pray over it before it gets packaged to send off in the mail or before it is tagged for a sale or given as a gift. I do this with every single item I make. Right down to things people don't wear like stuffed bunnies and pumpkins. Not only do I want the recipient of the article to be blessed by the work of my hands, because receiving something new and especially handmade, is always fun, but more importantly, I want them to be blessed in their lives whether I ever know them or not. God knows them and He knows their needs. I trust the unseen to Him.
I'll be honest, I feel rather exposed by sharing this here. It's just something I do that comes naturally to me. I get comfy with my tea, I knit and I pray. I turn the audiobook off when I'm really praying for specific things so it doesn't distract me. Praying for the person who will own what I am making has always seemed like the right thing to do to me. I've just always done it without giving it much thought. Maybe that seems odd to someone else or maybe many of you do the same thing.
I would love to hear from you about what method of knitting you use, where you enjoy sitting to knit or crochet and what your own unique rituals are that you do routinely as you take up your own yarn,  hooks and needles.
"Rejoice always:
Pray without ceasing;
in everything give thanks;
for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."
1Thessalonians 4: 16-18


  1. There's no reason to feel awkward about revealing this. It's lovely, and I sincerely doubt you are the only one - I tend to pray while knitting, and when I am knitting for charity, I put a lot of hope into it as well.

    St. Benedict said "Work is prayer." Well, so is knitting.

    1. Oh Bridget, thank you for saying this to me. You don't know what it means to me. I love it that you pray and put a lot of hope into your knitting too. I think you must be right that many of us do this. It's funny how we think so often we are alone in something just to find that we are not so alone at all.
      I am with St. Benedict. Work is prayer. And with YOU... so is knitting. Well said my friend, Well Said.

  2. Lovely post, Danette. I think everyone has their own knitting routine, and it's so interesting to read about yours. I'm a pray-er, too, and often during knitting time I think about and pray for the person who'll be receiving the item I'm working on. Sometimes I drink coffee as I knit, but I have to admit when I have tea (in the cooler months) it's very enjoyable. I like Earl Grey with cream and sugar best of all. ;) I learned to drink tea at the table of a lovely Englishwoman when we lived in Germany. (Working on a post about that to share in the fall.)

    I learned to knit English, then when I learned Fair-isle knitting I learned to knit Continental to make it easier when holding two yarns. Since then I usually start out knitting English but switch back and forth when my hands get tired with one style or the other. I learned to crochet during my last year in high school. Psychology class was so lack-luster that I brought my hook and yarn to keep me awake.
    Hope you're having a great weekend!

    1. Well Toni, I must say, somehow I figured you were a pray-er too :-)
      I love it that you learned to drink tea at the table of a lovely Englishwoman. Who better to teach someone to drink a proper tea?! For many years I had a lovely, dear friend across the street who was from Sussex and came here as a WW2 bride. She was a knitter too. I would go over and drink tea and visit with her but she recently went to live in a local nursing home and I miss her. She's 93 now. I am looking forward to your post you are working on for this fall.

      I admire that you can switch back and forth with your knitting like that. I cannot make my hands do the English method, which actually surprises me because I'm ambidextrous and can write with both hands although I am right hand dominate. With all things pertaining to my left side though I use my left hand strictly. As putting on my make up and shaving my left leg. But I can't knit that way!

      I LOVE IT that you took your crocheting to psychology class with you!!! Did the teacher notice?
      You have a great weekend too... and Yes, I am having a pretty good one...
      Love, Danette

  3. Your hats are gorgeous and I love the little flower you added. A beautiful touch.

    1. How sweet of you Donna! Thanks so much... so good to hear from you! Have a lovely day,

  4. Hi Danette,
    Your post has come at quite an opportune time this morning. I was just sitting here going through my blog list, getting inspired by the lovely pictures, when an idea of a project started forming. I recently started a craft group one evening a fortnight with some ladies from my church. One of the ladies has cancer and is going through chemotherapy, soon to have stem cell replacement.
    I was thinking about trying to work on a crochet blanket to give her, if I can get some of the others to do squares (It is only a small group and I don't know that I have that many crocheters in the group, it could be an interesting challenge!).
    And Inwas thinking as I read your post that we could pray over the squares as we did them.

    I don't have a great deal of craft time lately, as I have just returned to my theology course I started some time ago. However, I do love to put on a pot of tea, get out the China cup and saucer, find a cosy spot and knit or crochet. I like to listen to something to, or watch a movie, something light hearted, maybe old fashioned. And when the weather is nice, I like to sit on the verandah (porch), listen to the birds and watch the world go by. Although ther isn't much world going by from my view. I am usually on my own, but if I feel I simply have to have some human interaction, I'll pack my knitting or crochet into my bag and go off in search of a coffee shop.


    1. First thing my dear friend Fi is I must apologize to you! I somehow missed this comment until just now. Now on to the important things ...
      I think your idea of crocheting blanket squares for your friend who is going through treatment is a perfect idea! Most definitely pray over them individually and then when you have it all sewn together you can all lay your hands on the blanket together and pray for your friends healing. Of course doing this over her body is important too but I don't need to tell you that. I'm so excited to hear you are taking theology classes and I would love to hear the details of that! Seriously.
      I like to take my knitting bag and sit at a coffee shop sometimes too. I love the atmosphere around me while I work with yarn.
      Let me know what your group decides to do for your friend and how she comes along. I would love to pray for her. What is her first name?
      God can do Mighty things! My husband is a Pancreatic Cancer Survivor (5 years next month and cancer free!).
      Blessings to you,

  5. Not sure if my last comment went through, I had a glitch at my laptop end. But I wanted to say that surely you are doing good things with your prayerful knits. That they would touch the lives of those who received them, and that the goodness would surely have a ripple effect in their lives, too.

    1. Thank you for saying this Julie. It means more than you know. It matters more than anything else to me.

  6. I think praying for the recipient of your labor is a wonderful gift to them. Your knitting routine sounds so lovely it makes me want to get out my needles! I love to read, and listening to an audio book would be a great way to do both.

    1. Thank you Deborah. Yes! Get out those knitting needles! I can't tell you how wonderful it is to knit and be read to just by tuning into an audiobook.


Thank you for taking time to chat with me ~
Your comments make me so Happy!
Have a lovely day.