Saturday, March 20, 2010

Grandmother's Ring

Today’s Readings: Acts 13:40-41 NIV

40 [Paul said,] “Take care that what the prophets have said does not happen to you: 41 ‘Look, you scoffers, wonder and perish, for I am going to do something in your days that you would never believe, even if someone told you.’”

Good evening!

I gently pulled the rings off my mother’s swollen fingers. She had broken her wrist in a fall, and, as we waited for the first set of x-rays, I began to worry her precious rings might not come off. She had lost a considerable amount of weight over the last few months. I had grown accustomed to seeing the rings flip around in circles around Mom's shrinking fingers. This was not the scenario tonight. Granddaughter Rachel applied some silky smooth hand lotion to Gigi's rings, and with a few gentle tugs, the jewelry slipped off her fingers and into my hand.

I knew the story behind her wedding set. Mom had tossed my father’s engagement ring into the trash can, thinking he had mailed an empty box to her for some strange reason. It was only after she received the telegram which followed a day later that she and her five girlfriends spent hours poking holes in a trash dumpster searching for that precious box. The ring was finally found and my father never knew Mom had almost thrown it away. Was it pure luck that she found the ring? Not hardly. Nothing has ever happened in my mother’s life by happenstance.

I did not know the history behind my mother’s dinner ring. She told me it belonged to my grandmother. I did not recall Miss Mary ever wearing any kind of jewelry. Sometime after my grandfather had passed away, she treated herself to a designer ruby ring. Mom said it was the only extravagant purchase my grandmother ever made. As Grandmother spent her final days in a hospital bed, she passed the ruby ring to my Mother and asked her to wear it always in remembrance of her. I carefully examined the ruby ring, now in the palm of my hand. Caked in lotion, this piece was in obvious need of cleaning. Mom let me take the ring home for safekeeping, since she wouldn’t be able to wear it for awhile. It had not been off her finger for over thirty years, and it broke my heart to have to remove it after all this time.

I could not believe my eyes, when I saw just how beautiful the ring was, once polished. Its intricate design is truly exceptional. I wondered whether my grandmother had the ring custom made just for her. I took a tiny jeweler’s brush and began polishing each of the grooves. To my amazement, the gold inlay was tiny spokes, encapsulating intricate open pockets – I couldn’t even see this until the ring had been thoroughly examined. The ruby is a mere chip, encrusted with tiny shining diamonds; the ruby mounting is slightly raised to accentuate its brilliant color. What a perfect compliment to a timeless heirloom! I put the ring on my finger and realized that the ring which fit my Grandmother and Mother also fit me! I felt an immediate and special connection to these precious women, while admiring my Grandmother’s ruby ring.

It is not always easy to see and understand the Father’s master plan. If we are not careful, we may miss out on His precious Truth. What appears on the surface, caked in intellectual doubt and misconception, is the Father’s bright and shining Morning Star. We need Christ’s help to look beyond the physical and see His Cornerstone shining within. Paul warned his listeners not to take lightly something they may never believe, even as they had been forewarned by the prophets of old. Will we die wandering in our own misguided direction, while Jesus Christ is standing right there in front of us?

The Word of God cuts through thick crusty layers of sin and reveals Himself perfectly. Do not let your own human eyes stand in the way of seeing the living Christ. Will you throw your faith away without digging deeper? Jesus is the Cornerstone; our bright and shining Morning Star. When it comes to seeking the Lord, absolutely nothing occurs by happenstance.

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO


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