dreams, not reality

I’m obviously living in a dream world these days. Perhaps I’ve lived in one my whole life..how would I know? You know the old adage “your eyes are bigger than your stomach”? Well, this is how I feel about knitting sometimes. There are so many great projects out there that I want to do, and even have the yarn to do, but I either believe that I’m a faster knitter than I really am, or that I’m a better knitter than I really am. Maybe both.

Case in point: the lace inset for my shawl. The *blooming* ^ thing is only 80 rows and will only be 70 stitches for each repeat. (Hint: it is not that big.) Except that I keep making mistakes that I just can’t account for. I noticed last night that one of the 4 sections was “tilted” a little = i.e. the lace flower was sort of, leaning, in one direction instead of being straight up. I also noticed that even though I counted properly, and the center of the row that I was working lined up with the center of the motif…somehow the last 15 or so stitches are completely off. I have one less stitch than I should have and I can’t figure out where it should go. I feel like crying, except that my new mantra is “there is no crying in knitting”. I can’t really knit the whole thing backwards…let’s face it, I would cause far more problems by doing that than I would actually fix if I were to successfully knit back 3 rows. So my only conclusion I can draw here is that I am living in a dream world where I consider myself a more-than-average knitter who can knit lace…and who doesn’t cry…

In other news, since I promised someone I would do this, I would like to tell you all about the youth ministry that I’m doing this semester. The ministry is call Inside/Out, and it is an inner-city ministry up in Waukegan (where I live) aimed at hispanic kids. The goal is to help provide a safe and loving environment where kids can grow spiritually – from the inside out. Each week we play games, have bible verse memory time, a meal, and then either teaching/craft or some kind of worship/video teaching. In any given week we can have kids from 7 years of age all the way up to 14 – although we do have one awesome high-schooler who comes faithfully every week and is considered to be a “junior leader”. He works so well with the younger kids and is a wonderful young man to have around.

I don’t know the backgrounds of most of the kids, but I know that a few of them have very unstable homes. The young man I was talking about – his father is in jail, I believe for molesting his younger sister, and his mother is living with another man (probably a common-law marriage) and just had another baby. And that is just one of the family situations that kids come from. There are others, I’m sure, that are equally as heartbreaking. But their family life is not really the point.

The point is, these kids need to be loved on. These kids need to find acceptance and approval by the majority (in my mind this = “white” people). These kids need to know that just because they are second/third generation American, the “American” dream is still open to them. And, of course, they need to know that God loves them more than anything. Our job as leaders is to show these kids the love of God and to build a foundation in them that just because they are the down-cast, the lowly, the societal “outcasts” and usually the overlooked and forgotten ones – God still loves them, and with that kind of love anything in life is possible. Hopefully this foundation will last them through the years of growing into young men and women and be firm for them as they find their way into this world.

One of the things I’ve been tasked with is to come up with a mission statement for this ministry. If you are inclined, I would ask for prayer for the future of this ministry. The person who started it – had the vision and the passion for it – has long since moved on (literally moved to another state) and the leaders, while being committed to coming and being with these kids, there is not the dynamic leadership that will grow and transform this ministry any more. There is no marketing in place nor any energy to think about marking right now. I’m not sure what the “finances” are, but I don’t really think there are any at the moment. The church where we meet allows us to use the facility, but there is no one on staff who is personally involved with this ministry – something that I feel is lacking. Without a vision setter, this ministry is in danger of peetering out – and that would be a very sad thing to see.

^ Blooming – a term that can mean something profane, or something that actually blooms (like a flower) but in this case can mean both. 🙂

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