Have you ever heard “knitting is the new yoga”?
This is no longer a new saying, honestly. But the point is that we now know knitting has a variety of health benefits. One of the most crucial (and the reason it’s so often compared to yoga) is stress relief.
As I mentioned in this post, knitting has become a trendy form of self-care. You don’t have to be an avid knitter for long to realize why.
When I sit down with my yarn and needles, it feels to me like a sweet indulgence. (Which is pretty funny considering how often I’m knitting for someone else.) No matter how simple or difficult my project, I often lose track of time when I’m focusing on my stitches.
Creativity Isn’t Just an Indulgence
Interestingly, knitters can sometimes be made to feel guilty about their knitting. I don’t think non-knitters mean to do it, but I’ve heard this when I’ve knitted in public:
“I wish I could knit, but I don’t have the time.”
Or its variant: “I wish I could knit, but I don’t have the patience.”
Again… it makes knitting feel like a luxury that most people simply can’t afford.
But let me ask you this: does eating healthfully feel like a luxury? Does exercising feel like a luxury? Does getting a good night’s sleep feel like a luxury? Does meeting with friends feel like a luxury?
Of course, there are those who would say “yes, it does.” Especially with things like sleeping or meeting with friends. Our culture has a terrible tendency to consider everything relating to “productivity” to be a good thing, and everything else to be an indulgence or a “waste of time.”
That’s how worldly thinking can make us forget the way God created us.
God did not create human beings to be human doings. He did not create us to run nonstop and do nothing but get things done. He created us to start, to work, and to stop again. He created us to feed our bodies as well as our minds, our hearts, our spirits. He created us to rest regularly.
And God called us to be creative.
When we allow any of these things to spiral out of control, at the expense of the other needs that He created us to have and to fulfill, we will suffer.
And one thing that tends to seem expendable in our lives is our creativity.
Just a Few Creative Pursuits
This is precisely where knitting is so valuable. Of course, if you can’t knit (or crochet) to save your life, you have so many other avenues available to you.
Some examples of creative pursuits that have nothing to do with yarn:
1) Cooking and/or baking
2) Drawing, painting, and/or sculpture
4) Woodworking (or any kind of building)
5) Organizing (Yes! Organizing! It involves creating order out of chaos, and that is most definitely a creative pursuit!)
6) Writing (both fiction and nonfiction)
8) Music – writing songs, playing instruments, singing, even just listening to music
10) Photography and videography
And these are just 10 examples. There are so many more!
So What Are The Benefits of C
Let me offer you some examples of ways in which creativity can benefit people of faith in particular.
Self-expression: Creative pursuits give us a chance to connect with our emotions: love, joy, anger, sorrow, fear, and more. And in addition to allowing us to connect with our emotions, it can also give us the opportunity to transform them.
I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been wound up in fear or anxiety or even anger and sat down to knit several rows just to work out the tension. And then, after finishing a “knitting break”, I’ve found myself more able to see those emotions and work out exactly what has brought them out.
Self-forgetting: Does it seem strange that a creative pursuit can both help you express yourself and help you forget yourself? It’s definitely a contradiction, and yet, I’ve found so many times that a creative pursuit can do both.
This is especially true when you’re creating for someone else. Sure, there’s a degree of motivation when you’re making something for yourself. But when you’re making something for someone else, your motivation ratchets upward.
I always find myself being more careful and less willing to accept mistakes when I’m creating for someone else.
Not only that, but when I’m finished, I feel flush with excitement and pride. Which leads me to…
Self-worth: I’ve found
It’s not just the achievement that gives you that boost. It’s the process. It’s knowing that you’re working in a worthwhile manner (regardless of those who say that if you’re not doing work for money, it’s not worth anything).
God Calls Us to Be Creative and Work with Our Hands
Especially when you look through the New Testament, God’s call to be creative couldn’t be clearer. We find so much encouragement to work with our hands. Here are a few examples:
“… and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.” – 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12, NIV
“Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.” – Ephesians 4:28 NIV
“We work hard with our own hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it;” – 1 Corinthians 4:12
We can see here a few reasons why God encourages us to work with our hands:
1) Working with our hands keeps us minding our own business, rather than getting caught up in gossip and idleness. (Rest is encouraged throughout Scripture; idleness, on the other hand, is not.)
2) Working with our hands gives us the opportunity to care for our
3) Working with our hands aligns us with God’s purpose, enabling us to meet the challenges of life with confidence.
How Are You Answering The Call To Be Creative?
So perhaps you enjoy knitting. Or perhaps you enjoy a different creative pursuit. Or, perhaps you realize that something is missing from your life and you’re not sure what that something could be.
Could this be the time to either take up a new creative pursuit or else to pursue that act of creating with more intentionality? If you do, you’ll feel the reward of living a deep part of God’s purpose for your life.
Editor’s Note: To read more about how Nicole pursues her love of knitting and blesses others read: How Your Love of Knitting Can Be A Christian Ministry
Guest Post Author
I write and run Knitting forCharity.org and publish the Knitting Nuggets Newsletter. Here you’ll find everything you need to knit patterns you love for people you care about! I invite you to sign up for my free newsletter and receive the free guide “How to Get Your Handknits to Local People in Need”: https://www.subscribepage.com/HandknitsToLocalPeople