Today was Sunday, a day during which I decided to rest from worrying about whether or not I am doing enough during quarantine to help. I imagine that in Gennesaret, there were those who wondered about their roles as well. We – these imagined villagers and I – decided to bring to Jesus this prayer offering instead (perhaps you’d like to join us); because He is One who Heals.
Since becoming intrigued with this passage:
“When they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret and moored to the shore. And when they got out of the boat, the people immediately recognized him and ran about the whole region and began to bring the sick people on their beds to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he came, in villages, cities, or countryside, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and implored him that they might touch even the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well.” Mark 6:53-56
I have sometimes made prayer fringes: the strands of yarn represent a prayer for healing, or in this case, a prayer of keeping for the individuals with whom I am trying to stay connected during Covid 19. And those who have graciously reached out to me. Those that I am ostensibly trying to help, while less certain what resources might suffice. Some of my more meaningful conversations during this time have been with my neighbor Dave, a retired entrepreneur who is willing to dialogue about what makes a difference. In Gennesaret, the villagers brought, the sick reached, and something of the fabric of Jesus healed. There were roles to be played. In Jesus time, a woman spun yarn and thread from wool and flax to make clothing for her family. In the marketplaces, weaving was considered women’s work and looked down upon.
Some connections are complicated and deep, years in the making, like the knots. Others are simple and sweet. The important thing is, this day of worry-rest, that I am just arrogant enough to believe that sometimes, the very best I have to offer is to bring another person to Jesus, weaving a prayer, with the recognition that He is One who Heals.
How to make a prayer fringe:
1. Choose a hanger. I like to use driftwood for the Gennesaret story context, but a common marketplace item – spoon, knitting needle – would serve the same purpose.
2. Tie, loop, fasten individual pieces of yarn or embroidery floss to your hanger
3. If you are praying for one individual, allow each strand to represent a particular item of prayer for that person. If you are praying for multiple individuals, each strand could represent one person in a common prayer.
4. The beauty of this project is that you can pray while you are slowly making the art piece. Once it is hung, it serves as a reminder to keep bringing those concerns to Jesus, the One who Heals.
Some passages that could guide your prayers: Philippians 1:3-11, Ephesians 1:15-21, Psalm 46, Luke 11:2-4
“Mark 6:53 (ESV) – When they had crossed over.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 28 Apr, 2020. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/esv/mar/6/53/p1/s_963053>.
Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001, 2007, 2011, 2016 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved