I was a good student, I loved school and I flourished in the classrooms of the sixties and seventies. I was also athletic, loving sports and activities and they came easily to me. I still like to learn and regularly try something new, something that takes me out of my comfort zone.
Last summer I took a couple of weaving classes, on a lap looms, where the instructor had set up the warp ahead of time and we just had to weave back and forth and advance the warp and adjust the heddle. East peasy and I made this lovely scarf.
I told a friend how much I enjoyed it and was thinking about buying one… she had one that she wasn’t using and gave it to me. I had imagined a lap loom, however it is much more than that!
Someone from the Atlantic Spinners and Handweavers came to my house, set it up and spent some time with me. I was and am grateful to her! However, I knew that I needed the structure of a regular class otherwise it would get pushed to the margins, so weaving classes it was!
There are five of us in the class, three women around my age and two who are much younger. I am ALWAYS the last one completing one of the steps, last class one student was two steps ahead of me. And I can’t seem to remember what the next step is even after watching the instructor carefully. I feel incompetent, frustrated and last Monday I wanted to leave before the end of the class! I can’t even seem to tie knots properly.
I began to realize that this must be what it is like for some people as a congregation engages in Intentional Interim Ministry. When it is hard and frustrating, it is so easy to continue in familiar patterns that we know and are comfortable with, to act out in inappropriate ways (like my almost tears and internal anger) or simply disengage and quit. I knew all this intellectually, but hadn’t experienced it quite so immediately and viscerally. In Intentional Interim Ministry and weaving there is much prep word to be done before we actually begin to see the fruits of our labour. Working together is really the only way we flourish, my classmates have been generous with assistance and the people of Stairs Memorial United Church are engaged, committed, flexible and eager to embrace a future that they don’t really see yet. Like those good folks at church, I will persevere, because there is purpose and meaning in the end goal.
And that’s my window on God’s world.