Tonight, I was sitting on the couch, listening to the chatter of little girls’ voices upstairs, and twirling my rings… wondering if I should, or wanted to, go upstairs and remind them it was time for little girls to sleep… not time to be singing songs from one of their current movie favorites, ad nauseum. (Although I must admit they do sing it really well) 🙂
Anyway, as I was saying, I was looking at my rings, and I took them off to look at them more closely. The site of my wedding band by itself caught my breath with remembrances of shopping with my fiance for wedding bands, with the wedding day drawing near, and my last semester of college coming to an end, with its myriad of final papers and projects. Feeling excited, tired, proud walking alongside the tall man who made me feel “at home” the very first time I met him.
But my engagement ring, ah… gazing at my diamond ring as it stood alone…. I had to put it on, by itself, just to remember. The site of a diamond ring on the finger of a young woman, what dreams does it not hold in its sparkle? Dreams of creating a home… of traipsing along life’s journey-path with your best friend and soul-mate… of cooing babies, and playing children… and working, and serving God and others… but always with the joyful thought of this special one who would be doing it all alongside you.
And the thought of being chosen. The glinting of the precious stone that says “this one is taken.” (What else is an engagement ring for?) 🙂 Spoken for. Desired. LOVED. The longing of every woman (whether acknowledged or not).
Now a wife of 16 years, mother of an almost-teen, 9 and 6 year olds (waiting on our 3 yr old in Haiti!), the site of my ring brings that all back. It would be easy to think “if only that young woman knew what was coming! The hard days, the sleepless nights, the struggle of two becoming one flesh, giving up itself, to become the new. I wonder if she’d be dreaming so happily, then!?”
But the truth is, the sleepless nights are the result of being wanted… by those babies who will coo after I snuggle them close. And though the traipsing often feels more like plodding, there is someone to give me a boost up when I lag behind. And the struggle, for oneness, well that is the one thing that has made me to be more like The One who chose me, before I was knit in my own mother’s womb. The sacrifice, to serve, to prefer, the babies and the soul-mate, is how He changes me. I have stretchmarks, and heart-bruises, and gray hair (carefully hidden). The hand that models my ring tonight is more worn, with roughness, and veins not visible before.
And as I spend this season, focusing on His Gifts, He continues to change me. And the word “chosen” burns more deeply into my soul. As I struggle with sacrifice, discipline, and patience, I hope I am made more pliable. And when I feel tired of “being wanted,” (don’t we all have those days?!), I try to remember the magic of being wanted. Sixteen years ago, and before the earth was formed.
Well, it’s time to slip the rings back on together, start the dishwasher, wash off the table, and sketch out tomorrow’s to-do list. So many rambling thoughts in my head these days. Thanks for your patience as I begin to try to flesh them out with words. 🙂