The Simple Complexity of the Gospel- living in truth, tension and love

“knit, purl, knit, purl.”

In theory, knitting is simple. There are only two stitches. The knit stitch and the purl stitch. Everything is some combination of, or variation of, those two stitches.

In practice, knitting is not, always simple. I’m working on a beautiful hat, that while composed of just those two stitches, is proving to be complex. (For my knittah friends-)It’s “The Proverbial Cap” My Meg Swansen.The pattern is in the current issue of Interweave Knits.

Because it’s complicated, I have to focus. I need to constantly check the chart and determine my next action. This is not thoughtless knitting. It’s really not stress relieving knitting.  It’s challenging knitting, which is a kind of tension.  It’s thoughtful knitting.

I like it.  I can see that the work is going to be worth it.  The hat is going to be beautiful. I love that I am rising to the challenge, and because of this- I don’t mind the tension.

While I was concentrating on knitting this cap, a friend “came out” publically. Her action provokes a response. As a Christian, I have  one simple biblical response to someone who discloses [more of, in this case] who they are, to me… that’s The Gospel.

The Gospel is simple: God  loves, God accepts us where (ever) we are and loves us. So should  I. In life, His, is the pattern I choose to follow.

But, like the cap… it’s simple, in a complex way. It’s not easy. It’s not comfortable.  There is tension involved in living it out. Just as there is tension involved in following the pattern.  I have to choose my next action. In this case.. I know how to respond- that’s with love.  But, what does love look like in this situation? Is it a purl or a knit stitch? What comes next, in this particular pattern? How will love look going forward? Like the hat… I’m challenged. Like the hat.. I have to keep focused. I have to keep going back to the pattern… the gospel.

Simple. Complex.

Questions flood my mind….

“How do I manage this relationship?  How do I balance love and honesty?  Will disagreement be seen as rejection?  How honest should I be? What does this mean for her? for me? For the bigger picture? How do I figure this all out?”

The bottom line? What do I do, now? 

The truth is, I don’t have all the answers.

But, I do have the first one:

Love.

Maybe that’s both the knits and the purls in this pattern….Maybe it’s that simple, and that complex.

It’s a place to start.

I’m up for the challenge. Like the cap…. it won’t be easy. I will make mistakes. I will draw boundaries too tight, and then too loose.  (I swing like a pendulum when trying to figure things out) I will be so afraid to offend, that I will, most likely: offend. I will say dumb things, I will feel uncomfortable, and so (probably) will she.

And it will be worth it.

Why?  Because this woman is incredible and I love her, and taking the step to risk and share who she really is, is huge.  By doing so. she risks rejection, condemnation, judgment.

The very same risk we all take when being honest about who we are.

While I don’t have all the answers- I have enough to go forward, because I know that this is a place God is calling me to. A place where the gospel meets life.  She had a choice to make… and now, I do to, as her friend. Her choice was: “Would she tell her story- honestly?”

And mine is:  “Will I love the way Jesus does?”

The answer is: . I sure will try.

How does Jesus love?  Over and over He summed  the  like this:  34“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Yup. It’s that simple.

And that complicated.

Question for you—

(please note: I will exercise my right s to delete any comments that are attackful or demeaning- just so ya know. This isn’t a time or place for you post your view on homosexuality this s about living out the gospel)

So…How are you being challenged to live out the complexity of the simple Gospel?

What things are simple?

What is complex?

Dear Lord… this is yet another of those days when I don’t have all the answers.  But, I know you’ve called me to love. Every mom.  I’m asking you to help me unravel the complexity of what that love looks like in this pattern- I love you Lord- amen.

Also: this isn’t my first friend to come out…. so to me?  That’s a theme that God wants to deal with…

3 thoughts on “The Simple Complexity of the Gospel- living in truth, tension and love

  1. Niki says:

    I found your blog a couple weeks ago, and I’m sure glad I did! You are so inspirational.

    Thanks for all the great thought provoking posts.

  2. Valerie says:

    Beautiful, challenging post! Thank you!

  3. Jennifer S says:

    Can I just say that “knitting” is really hard?!

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