Saturday, August 25, 2012

Little Boy Blue: A blanket for Joshua

I made my first baby blanket.  I think I have found a new love.  I have been crocheting for a while now, but somehow the baby blanket has managed to elude me.  I've made scarves, hats, toys, purses, booties... but never a blanket, baby or otherwise. The pattern is memorable and so easy to pick up no matter where you left off.  I kept my unfinished project in my purse and whenever I had a few minutes, I'd work on it.  

I used Simply Soft Country Blue and followed the pattern exactly with no alterations or changes.
Originally, I found the pattern on (find me, I'm Iowaycrochet), but now that I'm blogging about it, I can't find the pattern to create a link.  So I will just have to write the pattern from the printout I made.

Hook: Size G 
Yarn: I used Caron Simply soft "Country Blue"

The pattern is easily memorized making it the
perfect project to take anywhere.
Row 1:  Ch 126, sc in 2nd ch from hook and across.
Row 2:  Ch 1 turn, (sc, ch 3, 3 dc) in 1st sc, *Skip 3 sc, (sc, ch 3, 3dc) in next sc, Rep* across to last 4 sc,  skip next 3 sc, sc in lastsc.  (31 shells complete across)
Row 3:  Ch 3 turn, 3 dc in 1st sc, (sc, ch 3, 3 dc) in each ch-spacross.  ending with sc in last space.

Repeat row 3 approximately 55 rows.
Last Row:  Ch 3 turn, 2 sc in ch-sp, *sc in sc, sc in next dc, skipnext dc, sc in next dc, sc in next ch-sp.  Repeat from * across tolast shell, do not skip middle dc of last shell.  (123 sc across)

Working in Rounds
Rnd 1:  Ch 1 turn, 3 sc in 1st sc, [ *sc in each sc,  rep *across,  3sc in last sc, * (3 sc in ch-sp, sc in sc) rep * across,  working infree loops of beginning chain, 3 sc in 1st ch, sc in each chacross,]  3 sc in last, Rep * around,   last round rep between [ ] .sl st to 1st sc, (changing colors here if using contrasting colors)
Rnd 2-3:  With white, ch 1, sc around with 3 sc in corners, sl st.
Rnd 4:  Ch 2, do not turn, *skip sc, sc, ch 2, rep * around sl st in1st sc.  
Rnd 5:  Ch 1, turn, sc in sl st, *sc in ch-sp, sc in sc around with 3sc in corners.  Rep * around.  
Rnd 6:  Ch 1, turn,  *(sc, ch 3, 3 dc) skip 3 sc, rep * around sl st to1st sc.  Finish Off

Add caption
   The thing I love about this pattern is that it is delicate and dainty for a baby, but it is substantial enough to be washed and used on a daily basis.  I made this for my grand nephew who is expected to make his appearance in September. :)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Be Careful Little Mouth What You Say

Be careful little mouth what you say.  Am I the only one who learned that song in Sunday school? Okay everyone... all together, to the tune of "If you're happy and you know it"...

Oh be careful little mouth what you say.
Oh be careful little mouth what you say.
For the Father up above is looking down with love,
Oh be careful little mouth what you say.

As with many of my posts, (though they be few and far between), my topic is one that has kept me awake at night.  It sloshed around in my cranial juices and wouldn't go away.  Not that I really wanted it to, I am a ponderer, a, an excogitator. (Yes, it is a word).  I confess to being a slow thinker, and although my mouth often has a reputation for being quick witted, sarcastic and sometimes slightly biting, I really don't think very quickly.  I react.  And therein lies a great deal of my problems.

Here comes the ready for it...

When our theology becomes thoughtless and more of a knee jerk reaction to life or situations, instead of being solidly grounded in scriptural truths, we will inevitably produce wasteful words.  And when I say  "wasteful", I mean to say putrid, bodily excrement.  Yeah, nasty putrescence (Princess Bride reference there, catch it?). 

When I was much younger and quite a bit dimmer...a beautiful man came into my life. (Awwww).  Yes, I speak of my dear husband.  In my attempt to impress the young theologian and win him over with my spiritual prowess... I said something profound.  I don't even remember what it was, but I am sure I thought it was quite a revelation from God.  His response?

"Why do you believe that?"
 ..... huh?
"Well, uh, I don't even know that I do... I was just repeating what I heard someone say.  It sounded good."

If I hadn't been so dumbfounded by his gentle challenging of my words, I might have been offended.  Why did I say what I said?  Did I believe it?  And if I wasn't sure, what the heck was it doing coming out of my mouth?

Fast forward through roughly 20 years and hundreds more humbling experiences like the one I just shared, and you come to today.  And what I have mulled over in my mind is that the common thread among these hundreds of stupid things I have said is me.  Me, me, me, me, me, and  me.  When I place myself at the center of my theology, the result is stupidity and confusion; drivel, incomprehensible BABBLE.  Yes, Babble.  Like the kind that says, I can make up my own name and create my own way to God.  I can think great thoughts apart from Him.  I will build for myself a tower of thoughts and ideas that will be so lofty, it can only raise me to God Himself.  Blah, blah, blah.

When we remove God's Word from our daily speech and attempt to use our own reason and understanding, we babble.  We speak nonsense which inevitably contradicts God's truths, because if we aren't speaking God's Word, we are speaking lies from our own sinful desires.  It might seem like we have allowed God to take part in our deductions of the mysteries of this world... but truly, apart from Him, we can do and think no truth.

 Without continual reformation of our thoughts and speech by God's scripture, we allow lies to shape our thinking.  This begins with the use of phrases which we adopt without truly holding the words and meanings up to the revealing light of scripture.   We ignorantly regurgitate what we heard someone say, without even picking apart what was said.  It "sounded" spiritual and who doesn't want to appear spiritual and wise?  So we thoughtlessly speak back what we heard.  Think of a small child who has been the audience of an adult conversation which included a vulgar word.  The child ponders that word and then, at a most inappropriate time, uses his new treasure to the embarrassment of his parents.  The child seems proud of his new vocabulary, and yet, the reaction he gets from others causes him to realize.. hmmm, maybe I don't really know what I just said.  There is truth to the old saying, "A child should be seen and not heard."  If we are uncertain about something scriptural, don't speak.  Wait for an appropriate time to ask "What does this mean?"  Ponder, mull, excogitate. ;)

The danger with Christians speaking apart from God's Word is that if gone unchecked, and unrepented... the chasm grows.  It produces Christians who pick and choose which portions of the Bible are important and applicable to them, rejecting anything that isn't personally palatable or pleasing. Ultimately, this produces Christians who believe homosexuality, adultery, and living together outside of marriage are acceptable lifestyles... that abortion is okay in certain situations.   Inevitably you have Christians who tragically lose the true language of scripture which had been spoken and taught to them by the Holy Spirit, rejecting it and choosing instead to speak a language that is foreign and incomprehensible.  When we are at the center of our thinking, we babble.  When Christ (God's Word) is at the center of our thinking, through the translating of the His Holy Spirit, the mysteries of scripture are revealed  to us and in us, producing true faith and teaching us to speak a language (His Word) that delivers faith to others.

By no means do I want to even remotely convey or give the impression that this is a past struggle or that I don't daily need my mouth washed out with soap for things I have selfishly confessed.  Again as with all my posts I emphasize the forgiveness we have in Christ and the Hope He gives us for the transformation of our minds even unto the last day when we will be made complete in Him.

May we boldly speak, and speak only Christ.

*Note: When I choose to post about theological things I send my posts first to my husband... who happens to also be my pastor, so that he can correct or adjust anything that might be out of line.  I think it is important to make that point clear. This post has been deemed heresy-free ;)