If you are a knitter or crocheter, quilter or cross-stitcher, or involved in other types of handwork requiring needle and yarn or thread, you know the frustration of finding yourself pulling against a knot that has mysteriously appeared at the wrong time and place. As long as everything moves along smoothly, you enjoy the forward progress toward finishing a project.
But what about those times when that sneaky knot interrupts the smooth stitches you’ve made? You have to stop, sort out the knot, making sure not to destroy any part of your work. I’m knitting on a project currently where I’ve encountered several knots through no fault of my own (of course, not!), but knots they are and undo them I must.
Similar to other frustrations in life with relationships, jobs, health issues, and more, knots are interruptions we could do without.
Let’s stop and think a minute or two.
Ever wonder what God must feel when He’s knitting us together, as a church community or group? Everything is going along fine when suddenly someone’s feelings are hurt, or some protocol seems inappropriate to some and not to others, or decisions can’t be made harmoniously.
We know what we should do, but being human we fight stubbornly against one another and the knot grows tighter. Perhaps some hear God’s voice instructing to loosen the knot, but the risk of losing face in the fight isn’t worth it at the moment.
The knot grows tighter and tighter. Eventually, someone tugs too hard or quickly, and everything falls apart.
Much like a dropped stitch when working against a knot in knitting, you see all the hard work you, as a group or community, have invested go tumbling.
Look at all the open spaces, the holes left in the knitting to the left, when stitches are dropped and left untended or repaired. Everything spirals out of control.
God weeps when He sees the communities or groups He is knitting together lose the tightness of the weave He has encouraged them to find. His hope is for a smooth and consistent weave, one that will be strong and when needed hold its shape, no matter the circumstances that face it.
We are given instruction in His Word on working together. In Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, he writes:
Some of you say that you follow me, and others claim to follow Apollos. Isn’t that how ordinary people behave? Apollos and I are merely servants who helped you to have faith. It was the Lord who made it all happen. I planted the seeds, Apollos watered them, but God made them sprout and grow. What matters isn’t those who planted or watered, but God who made the plants grow. The one who plants is just as important as the one who waters. And each one will be paid for what they do. Apollos and I work together for God, and you are God’s garden and God’s building.
1 Corinthians 3:4-9 (CEV) (emphasis mine)
Not only in our church communities or groups can we experience this loss of harmony and strong weave, our personal lives can also be affected by our lack of harmony in the home, marriage, work place or much more.
We are called as Christians to work together to share and show God’s love for us one to another and when our weaving or knitting together becomes knotted, we are to look for ways of working together to loosen the strand but not break the thread.
When have you found yourself in a place or position where knots had become so strong in relationships of church community or small groups that the group stood at risk?