The Sweater

As fall arrives, I enjoy hitting the department stores in search of that one beloved, cozy sweater that will be the love of my wardrobe for the entire fall-winter season.  It’s something that I look forward to every year…and on occasion, I buy the “chosen one” only to find another cozier one on my next shopping trip.  Living in Canada means bundling up to keep the body nice and warm, and these sweaters make my life bearable to brave the six months of wind-chills and snow storms.

I wear these sweaters with great pride, but as time goes on, I have been noticing that I put little pulls in these sweaters daily.  Sometimes they get caught on my jewelry, sometimes they get picked on the Velcro of my jacket…or my kids’ jackets.  Many times I don’t even realize how I got the pull in my sweater…it just randomly appears…out of nowhere…and I wonder…am I numb?

All of my sweater pulls lead me to wonder…am I the only person whose sweater gets constantly pulled and am I the only one with little nip and tugs on my sweaters?  What is wrong with me, that I can’t wear a sweater without ruining it?  I always try to hide and fix the pulls to the best of my ability, but it is never the same, I can always notice them, even though others might not.  I know these pulls are there and this really, really bothers a perfectionist like myself.  I know it sounds odd, but these pulls really bother me.

Disappointed I sat in wonderment…my sweater is kind of like my marriage, my parenting skills, my teacher abilities…really…the sweater is quite symbolic of my life.  I start everything off with such great intentions… with perfectly woven fabric, fresh off the rack, and then a pull comes here, and a pull comes there, it starts to unravel…sometimes unbeknownst to me and suddenly, my shirt is unwearable.  I would never be seen in public with it on.  I’d wear it around my house to do housework or hang out, but I wouldn’t want anyone to see it.

As I age, and see life through eyes of an experienced adult, I am starting to realize that these sweaters might be symbolic of my life, but everyone has pulls in their sweaters.  Some might be professionals seamstresses and are professional at hiding them, others wear their pulls right out in public without a care in the world.  These are the people that I admire most.  They make mistakes and own up to them, they don’t try to hide their imperfections, and they try to help others with their “pulls” in their lives.  They also don’t judge the pulls in your sweater…they understand that we all have pulls.

I love the verse from Matthew 7:3 “Why, then, do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the log in your own eye?”  Instead of the logs we should take a look at our own warm, cozy sweaters.  Everyone has pulls in their sweaters, but we should fix the pulls in our sweaters before we judge other peoples’ pulls.

We should worry about putting energy into fixing our own marriages, not judging what other marriages look like.  We should focus on our own parenting techniques and not judge the way other parents are raising their children, that is their choice.  We should focus on the changes we need to make in ourselves, and not the changes we want others to make.

If only the world would follow the wisdom that is laid before us in the pages of the bible…our sweaters would be much cozier, and the season of fall and winter…life much more bearable.