FO: Stripe Parade

 

 

In late April, The Plucky Knitter released her spring pattern collection, Spring Forward, that features patterns from the Plucky Knitter herself as well as Amy Miller and Jill Zielinski. There were a few patterns that caught my eye and ended up in my library, but there was one pattern that I knew that I needed. It was Amy Miller’s Stripe Parade. I procured yarn for the sweater; I wanted to use Plucky’s primo fingering and after a bit of destash hounding, I ended up with three colors that I really liked. My goal was to make a sweater with pink and gray stripes and a purple accent stripe. It’s not exactly my normal color palette, but it is colors that I like together.

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I’m not the world’s fastest knitter, and I’ve been a bit busy this summer. (Also, in June I decided that I wanted to make it into a sweater dress instead of a regular sweater but I digress.) But I finished the sweater on Saturday morning. And I love it. It is exactly what I wanted. IMG_2384

But it’s done now, and I love it. I recommend the pattern highly. It’s well-written and easy to work with. And the yarn, well, it’s delightful. IMG_2385 IMG_2389

Raveled here.

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The Promise to Pray

Over the summer, I’ve been dealing with a tough situation. I’m looking for a new job, and the search has been difficult at times. I’ve talked with various friends and family members about this over the summer, and I’m grateful for the enormous amount of support that I have received.

I recently realized that the people who I view as most supportive are the ones who promise to pray for me. I’ve asked several friends to pray for me, and they always respond in the affirmative. One of my coworkers ends every serious (more than a quick “hi, how are you?”) conversation we have these days with “I’m praying for you.” It’s a simple four-word sentence, but it means the world to me. Someone is praying for me. Actually, a lot of someones are praying for me.

That means the world to me. These people are showing me their love and support by promising to ask the Lord to help me. We don’t know how this situation will end. We don’t know exactly what the Lord’s will is in this moment. But we’re surrendering it to him. We’re asking him to bless it. We’re trusting him with it. And praying for someone else’s needs and wants-that’s an act of love.

These people can’t find me a new job. They can’t change the circumstances of my life. But they can love and support me in a difficult time in my life. And that is what prayer is. Prayer is an act of love. Praying for another person is an act of love. In our prayers, we are submitting ourselves to the Divine Will. We are humbling ourselves before the Lord and placing our trust in him.

We don’t know exactly how the Lord will answer our prayers, but we believe that he will answer them. And so we pray. We pray for our own wants and needs. We pray for others. And the promise to pray is an act of faith in God and of love both for God and for the other. After all, prayer is one of the most powerful things in the world.

“Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.”

-Mark 11:24

Please keep praying. Keep your eyes fixed on the Lord.

Perspective

“An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.”

-G.K. Chesterton

I’ve talked before about how the past year and a half of my life has been an (at times unwelcome) adventure. It hasn’t always gone the way that I wanted it to, but that’s also not necessarily a bad thing.

However, when things don’t go my way or I’m disappointed/unhappy with things, I have a tendency to get upset. There may at times be slight temper tantrums. I may become sad. I have a very intense personality, and I feel things (both positive and negative) strongly. At these times, I need to be put back into perspective.

This past week, I received some news that was actually good news. It was unexpected, but it was good news. However, because it didn’t line up with my expectations, I had a bit of a meltdown. I was facing cognitive dissonance, and I felt it strongly. I didn’t react well.

However, I (in an act of self-preservation) sought out a coworker who has a much less intense personality than my own and can look at the world through a more level-headed lens. I explained the situation, and it quickly became apparent to both of us (him more than me) that what had happened was actually a good thing. It wasn’t what I had expected or planned, but it was (and still is) a good thing. And this man began using that word “adventure.”

His use of that word helped me eventually come to see the beauty of what had happened, but it also helped me to realize that I far too often look at things as inconvenient or difficult because they aren’t what I wanted or planned. If things don’t go my way, I look at them as difficult or problematic. But as my beloved Chesterton says, these things are adventures if they are looked at properly. It’s all a matter of perspective.

I need to daily choose to look at the world through a positive lens. I need to daily choose joy and to see the world in a joyful manner. I need to remember that God loves me and wants to give me good things. God actively desires nothing but good for his children. As Christ himself says, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!” (Matthew 7:11) But I have to change my perspective. I have to choose to see the good. I have to choose to see the adventures and not the inconveniences. I need to make that choice on a daily basis to look for how God is working in my life and not automatically assume that whatever goes against my plans must be bad.

I need to change my perspective. And that will be a choice that I’ll have to make. It will indubitably be a challenge for me at first, and I’ll definitely need reminders to look for the good in every situation. I’ll need to pray about this, and I’ll need prayers from others. But I think that it is a necessary change in my life and in my perspective.