I can hardly believe that so many years have past since I found my favorite navy blue sweater. I was on vacation in Holland, Michigan, staying at an old Victorian cottage on Lake Michigan. In a small clothes shop downtown I found the most perfect sweater in the whole world. One hundred percent cotton. Cable knit cardigan. Five large white buttons down the front. Classic styling. The right shade of navy-it would go with everything.
And so it has. It has been washed probably hundreds of times. It has been paired with clothes that are now long gone but it has remained. It is my old stand by; just right on a summer evening; just right over the shoulders in a movie; just right over the back of my writing chair if it turns chilly.
I got so used to it being my perfect sweater that I forgot to notice that it isn’t perfect anymore. A couple of weeks ago I put it on with a pair of new white shorts and a navy and white top. As I looked in the mirror I suddenly saw my beloved sweater for what it is now; old and faded and worn. I couldn’t believe it. I flushed slightly, embarrassed. I bet others noticed it years ago. Then I thought, gosh, what else haven’t I noticed?
It’s time to replace my sweater though I doubt I will be able to throw away this old friend that has serviced me so well for so long. It’s also time to look about me with a fresh eye and see what else in my life is worn and old. I don’t mean physical things but other things I haven’t taken note of in way too long. Comfortable “getting set in my way” things that hinder me from being the full person God intends me to be.
My worn out sweater brought to mind more than just a great vacation with my perfect find. Well, what do you know? That old navy sweater had in it one more service to perform.