Wrapping myself in love – the power of a prayer shawl

One of the outreach projects at our church under our last minister was the Prayer Shawl ministry project. Several women within the church were involved in knitting shawls. These were given out to those in need of prayer. Shortly after finding out about Jessica’s heart condition during my pregnancy with her, I was given one of these shawls.

 

Me holding Jessica in PICU while wearing my "prayer shawl" - "Wrapping myself in love - the power of a prayer shawl"

 

It has become a treasured possession. I wore it almost constantly throughout the remainder of my pregnancy. It came with me into hospital when Jessica had her in-utero surgery, and again when she was born. The first time I was able to hold her after her first open-heart surgery, we nestled together, skin-to-skin; the prayer shawl wrapped around both of us, keeping us warm. It gave me comfort each time Jessica was in theatre having surgery and made a wonderful cover to help me feed Jessica discreetly once we were home again. The prayer shawl often sits in a box in my wardrobe these days. However, it is still one of the first things I pack if Jessica has to go into hospital.

 

Me holding Jessica on PICU wearing my blue "prayer shawl"

 

To me, it is a physical representation of all the prayers that friends, family, and even strangers across the world have been praying for our family since those scary first days after Jessica’s diagnosis. Every time I wrap the shawl around my shoulders, I feel as though I am physically being wrapped in prayer. This is incredibly comforting. Even now, if I am having a very low day, wrapping myself up in my prayer shawl will help to give me strength and makes me feel better. It is my adult version of a comfort blanket. It may just be a blue knitted shawl, but to me it is full of love, hope, strength and support and is one of the precious gifts I have ever received.

7 thoughts on “Wrapping myself in love – the power of a prayer shawl

  1. What a beautiful prayer shawl, no wonder it is a treasured possession! I remember being sent a blanket made by a friend when I was pregnant and she explained she always sent baby blankets early so that during all those restless moments spent thinking about when baby arrived, the mother could hold the blanket and pour her hopes and dreams for the baby into it. Then when baby was born it would not only hold mummy’s scent, but also so much love! Like you say, these things may look like everyday items to others, but when you know about the love and prayers that have gone into them, you truly feel supported!

  2. This is what Martha’s teddy is for us, it’s the one thing we bought for our Baby girl before she was born. She has been to theatre with Martha everything, even with Mark’s Grandad when he had his breast removed for cancer last summer. The little pink teddy wears Martha’s Rosary beads and a few “guardian angels” pins that she’s been given.

    Xxx

  3. That’s such a fantastic ministry, I’ll mention it to Rev T as it could be something we could do at our church next time someone’s expecting a baby. I’m glad the shawl helped and comforted you

  4. This is lovely and I bet was such a comfort throughout the tougher times. Although I’m not particularly religious myself I have prayed for when having some rubbishy times and I must admit the comfort that brought was immense, which surprised me. Xx #twinklytuesday

  5. Oh what a lovely post – very special – and something to treasure forever that is so much more than just the object itself. Thank you for sharing lovely. Beautiful photos by the way #TwinklyTuesdays xx

  6. What wonderful memories from your shawl and it is easy to see why it is so special to you, your lovely little girl and her success story is somehow wrapped up in this piece of knitting. A lovely post Louise. #TwinklyTuesday

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