Darn Socks!

Tuesday, February 11

Karen Hutchinson

Karen Hutchinson

By Karen Tousley Hutchinson of Loveland, Colorado, USA

The earth, lovingly created as an environment for life to flourish, shudders in distress because creation’s natural and living systems are becoming exhausted from carrying the burden of human greed and conflict. Humankind must awaken from its illusion of independence and unrestrained consumption without lasting consequences.

—Doctrine and Covenants 163:4b

I love to darn socks. That statement can immediately shut down all conversation around me. Who in the world still wants to darn a sock? They are inexpensive to buy, and a pain to keep wearable—at least that’s how many people respond.

But I find great enjoyment in picking up the holey sock that needs fixing, finding a matching color yarn, and getting out my wooden darning egg. I sit down and make that useless item into something useful again.

I do have to admit that most socks I darn are socks I knitted myself. I know these socks well—they are my creations. I want them to be whole and beautiful again. I want them to fulfill their mission—to warm toes and comfort the foot in the shoe.

I wonder if God feels that way about us, God’s creation. God already knows us in ways far better than I know the socks I have made. God wants us to be whole, useful, and spiritually beautiful. And God tries to keep us “darned” all the time. When we become holey, tattered, and worn out, God is there with matching thread waiting for us to respond to divine repairs.

As much as I enjoy being the one doing the repairing, I want to be open and receptive to God’s efforts to heal me (no pun intended), so I can become that useful and beautiful creation again.

“If our minds and senses are alive to the trace of God in all creatures, we shall never waste…nor spoil…nor destroy in all the Earth. If we take and eat one piece of bread, how can we drop it half eaten and reach for another?

If a length of cotton, grown from so miraculous a seed in so complex a soil, tended, and harvested, and woven, and shaped by so many hands and minds…if such a scrap of stuff wears thin, shall we not hold it in careful hands? If it tears, shall we not mend it with love?”

—Faye Malania, The Quantity of a Hazelnut, adapted

Prayer for Peace
We would touch your Earth carefully, Lord. We would use it gently. We would treat it as the fragile creation that you have lent us. Help us mend it with love and peace.

Spiritual Practice: Weaving a Life
Hold (or imagine holding) a piece of woven cloth. Examine it carefully. Notice overlapping threads, the strength of their intermingling. Write a journal entry or meditate about the threads and patterns of your life. What design do you see? How does the life pattern you are weaving create justice and wholeness in God’s world? What new pattern are you called to weave?

Peace Covenant
Today, God, I will use the Earth less, and leave it as healthy as I can.

Leave a comment


  1. Susan Kimes

     /  21 February 2014

    Thankyou for your thoughts on darning. It reminds me that I am worth God’s fixing me now after my son died & I’ve been so depressed. I feel the Master’s hands working on me & know I must be patient.

  2. Diane Akers

     /  15 February 2014

    Thanks! Such beautiful words of wisdom and so wonderfully written!

  3. CK

     /  12 February 2014

    Karen, I loved your analogy with “creation” and making the “useless” usefull again! And yes, you DO make excellent socks, and other knitted items.

  4. Gladys Geis

     /  11 February 2014

    Thank you Karen for your thoughts. They help me to be more aware of things I can do that will be of value to our planet and how important it is to pay attention to souls that become old and worn and feel of no value.


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