I am often asked, “What brought you comfort in the early days?” The same memory usually pops in my mind that I like to share.
It was about a week after my husband’s funeral when my cousin, Becky, stopped by our home holding a box in her hands. She said it was a gift from her church. I opened the simple white box and found a beautiful, soft, hand knit prayer shawl; a treasure. I immediately took it out and wrapped it around my shoulders. I felt like I was receiving the biggest hug and warmth quickly came over me. I knew that someone, somewhere, had prayed over this particular shawl knowing that they may never meet the grieving recipient. I used it often as I would spend many days, weeks and months mourning my loss needing that special sense of a hug.
“The Prayer Shawl is a symbol, a garment, shroud, canopy, or cloak which envelopes the wearer both physically and spiritually, in prayer and celebration, in joy and sorrow. The Prayer Shawl, or Talit in Hebrew, is a commanded blessing, given by God.”
Also, the prayer shawl would have a prayer of some sort attached to it.
Each prayer shawl distributed by Church of the Nativity includes a card with the following:
“May this shawl made with love, through prayer, be a mantle and sign of God’s healing presence. May it strengthen you when you are weary. May it surround you and ease your suffering. May it encircle you when you feel in pain. May it comfort you when you feel alone. May it remind you of God’s abiding love. Amen.”
I have decided to begin knitting prayer shawls to share with grievers that cross my path in life. I will begin praying for the griever that I may never meet, but I know will be comforted in some small way. May they feel that warm embrace from me and our Heavenly Father.
Feel free to join me in this new endeavor! More shawls to share, more grievers comforted.