Finally! It's taken me forever (almost), but I'm finally back on track with preparing kits for my wonderful volunteers who are helping me knit prayer shawls. We distributed several last year, which were wonderfully received, and I hope to be able to distribute many more this year.
Why did it take so long to get them done? I'm so glad you asked! Yarn is being generously donated by individuals and yarn companies from all over the country. In order to utilize all of the beautiful colors, textures, gauges and quantities of yarn received, the shawls are made by using varying lengths of yarns. Each prayer shawl uses as many as 100 different yarns, and needless to say, no two are exactly alike.
Although it's certainly not difficult, it's a very tedious process to wind the yarn as it comes in to make handling easier, then to select the colors and textures to be used (it's semi-random, but I've learned the hard way that some combinations look much better together than others), and then there's cutting the yarns into different lenghts, tying the lengths together, and winding them into new balls for knitting. I'm making myself tired just describing the process! LOL. Anyway, thanks in large part to my daughter who was home for the holidays, we were able to make 40 "shawl balls" which are going out to Knitting Angels this week.
Just the other day I thanked God for bringing the knitters who have so joyously offered to knit these shawls. Then I prayed that He would lead me to the women that He wants to bless with them. Last night, while attending at a reception at church, I met a wonderful woman who just happens to work for a local non-profit that works with women who are transitioning from domestic violence shelters into new housing. I'm sure it was no accident that we ended up sitting next to each other. As we talked, she told me about a woman she's working with who suffered unspeakable horrors at the hands of her husband. As I heard just the barest details of her testimony (which is absolutely amazing), chills ran up my spine and I knew that God had answered my prayer. I will be taking a prayer shawl to church on Sunday, which will be delivered to her next week.
Sometimes I fall back into the old, and very unproductive, habit of worrying... How will I ever be able to knit enough prayer shawls to get them to even a tiny fraction of the women who need them? How will I know who to give them to? Will I have enough yarn? Will I be able to afford all the postage? Without fail God always reminds me, simply but firmly, that He is in control. This is His ministry, not mine... and that if I will do my part, which includes allowing Him to do His, He will.