At the annual Create in Me retreat held recently at Lutheridge, I had the opportunity to talk with participants from several states, including Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee about the work of LDR Carolinas. It was the perfect time to connect with people in those areas who have had experience preparing for and/or recovering from various disasters.
I also had the opportunity to share my experience and teach some basic and intermediate knitting skills. The intermediate knitters learned to knit this “Almost Lost Dishcloth.” The shape reminds me of the appearance of a hurricane!
During the weekend, with the theme Creation from Chaos, the words of the preachers and bible study leader used portions of Genesis including the stories of creation, the Tower of Babel, and the great flood, along with a portion of the story of Job’s trials, to reflect on various kinds of chaos we experience in life.
It was good to be reminded of God’s creative work in the world. And to be reminded that while God did once destroy life in the flood, God promised to never do that again, marking that covenant by hanging the bow in the clouds. The beautiful rainbow that gives us such delight is also an enduring sign that God hung up his weapon of destruction, retiring from battle forever. God will no longer war against creation.
Old Testament scholar Terence Fretheim explained in his work that this covenant should remind us to NOT describe severe storms, floods, and hurricanes as God’s judgement.
Pastor Ray and I remember seeing a sign in a church narthex during our first disaster experience after Hurricane Katrina which expressed that belief. That large hand-lettered sign read: “Katrina was an act of nature. What you do here is an act of God.”
That sign reminds me that in disaster recovery, and in every creative endeavor, we become co-creators with God as we allow God’s presence in the chaos to free us, change us, and guide us.
Ruth Ann Sipe
p.s. For my knitting friends, here is the pattern for the Almost Lost Dishcloth shown above:
Cast on 14 stitches.
Row 1 (and all odd rows) Knit across
Row 2 Slip one stitch as if to knit, knit 3, yarn over, knit until last 2 stitches, turn.
(Slipping the first knit stitch of these rows creates a smooth finished outside edge.)
Row 4 Slip 1, knit 3, yarn over, knit until last 4 stitches, turn.
Row 6 Slip 1, knit 3, yarn over, knit until last 6 stitches, turn.
Row 8 Slip 1, knit 3, yarn over, knit until last 8 stitches, turn.
Row 10 Cast off 4 and knit to end. (should be 14 stitches)
Repeat these rows to create 14 points.
Cast off, leaving enough yarn to draw up the center and sew edges together. Weave in ends.