Some time ago, I lost my high school ring. I would not have been hugely upset by it, except for the fact that it was given to me by my mom, and it is the last thing I have left that she ever gave me (as far as material possessions, that is…we’re not counting my stubbornness, or the chin-hairs…oops, did I actually type that???) Anyway…..I thought that it had fallen down a drain in my bathroom. I resigned myself to the fact that my ring was gone, most likely forever. Sure, thoughts of people who have had rings/jewelry returned after 20-30 years crossed my mind, but I didn’t really expect that to happen. The timing of losing my ring did correlate with the stage I was at in dealing with a lot of the emotional baggage that I picked up after losing my mom. I realized that, by “letting go” of the ring, it was symbolic of letting go of the baggage. And so, I came to grips with losing the ring.
However, the ring was not truly lost. During a re-arrangement of the office at home, my friends whom I live with FOUND MY RING!!! Immediately, I was reminded of Joel 2:25 : “The Lord says, “I will give you back what you lost to the swarming locusts, the hopping locusts, the stripping locusts, and the cutting locusts…” (NLT)….God restored my ring! and with it, a symbolic reminder that I could indeed hold to my memories of my mom and grandmom while ridding myself of the baggage. That probably doesn’t make sense to most of you reading this (ok, to the one person probably actually paying attention :-p), but it does to me, so that’s what matters. (No offense :))
Last night in Songsters, we sang a song that usually makes me bawl…”It Is Well” This was one of the songs I selected to be sung at my mom’s memorial service (along with “Amazing Grace”)……but the words continue to have ever-increasing meaning for me….
When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
“This hymn was written after two major traumas in Spafford’s life. The first was the death of his only son, shortly followed by the great Chicago Fire of October 1871, which ruined him financially (he had been a wealthy businessman). In 1873, while crossing the Atlantic, all four of Spafford’s daughters died in a collision with another ship. Spafford’s wife Anna survived and sent him the now famous telegram, “Saved alone.” Several weeks later, as Spafford’s own ship passed near the spot where his daughters died, the Holy Spirit inspired these words. They speak to the eternal hope that all believers have, no matter what pain and grief befall them on earth. ”
I was (and am) reminded that, it is only when I surrender something to God that He will restore it, in His time and in His way – which is far beyond and above my feeble attempts at understanding.