Monday, October 13, 2014

31 Days of Trusting Grace - Day 13 - Why I Still Wear a Promise Ring at 24

Disclaimer:  I hesitate to post this because posts about purity and being single, waiting for "the one" can come across as so cliche, but these are reminders that I need.  Maybe I'm not the only one.

We're sitting around the table in the teacher's lounge, laughing.  Someone had made a comment about how they need to find me a man.  I had agreed wholeheartedly.  We're a dying breed, we single twenty-somethings.  As the laughter dies down I say it just as an after thought, "Well, maybe it would help if I stopped wearing this ring!"  I gesture toward my left hand.  The ladies around me all look, "Well, yeah, that would do it.  Maybe you can wear it on another finger?"  We laugh again and go on with our conversation, but I'm still thinking about it when I get home at the end of the day.

I've worn this ring since I was 15, never taken it off.  See, I grew up during the height of the I-kissed-dating-good-bye-because-true-love-waits-and-I-have-a-passion-for-purity craze.  We all learned in youth group about how important it is to save yourself until marriage.  We signed our purity pledges.  We slipped on our "promise" rings.  And I'm glad we did.  I will teach my children the same thing one day.  Saving sexual intimacy for the confines of marriage is not only showing obedience to God, but it's also good for us.  It can save so much heart ache.

But, surely, at 24 I don't need that reminder anymore!  Surely my walk with God and the movement of Holy Spirit in my life is enough to keep me from making poor choices.  And maybe this ring really is confusing all the men out there and making me seem unavailable (because surely that's the reason the single men are not lining up at my door!).  So maybe it's time I take things into my own hands, take off this ring, and find myself a man... So I slip it off my finger and play with it for a bit.  And then I slip it right back on.

Because it's true.  I don't need a reminder of a promise I made to God to stay pure until marriage.  It's not the ring that's going to stop me from going there.  It is the movement of Holy Spirit and His creating an obedient heart within me.  But it is interesting to me that I've always called it a promise ring.  Not a True Love Waits ring, like many of my friends.  Not a purity ring, like others.  I've always called it my promise ring.  And as I put it back on my finger, I know why.  Because God knew that one day this ring would not be as much about the promise I made to Him as it is about the promise He has made to me.  I think about why being single bothers me.  I think about the longings unfulfilled and the dreams that haven't come true yet.  I think about the fear of spending my life alone.  I hear the whispers of lies that I'm just not _______ enough to have a man want me for his wife (fill in that blank however you'd like... beautiful, lovely, attractive, worthy.  The enemy is ruthless).  But there is a cross right there in the center of my ring that reminds me of truths untold.  God is sovereign.  He always provides.  Nothing in my life EVER goes unnoticed, no tear, no heart ache, no longing.  It's not my job to find myself a man.  God will provide in His time.  AND IF HE DOESN'T He will still prove faithful.  He will still be enough.  He still makes me enough.  I am loved, and that is not dependent on my relationship status.  I am still of value and that is not dependent on whether I write Ms. or Mrs. before my name.  THAT is the promise that I am reminded of as I wear this ring.  Christ chose me as His bride first, and He will never leave me uncared for. So this ring stays on my finger and the cross on my heart.  He is faithful, now and forever.  I will wait on the Lord.

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