I am going to share a story that happened a decade ago and has an impact on me now. Back when James and I were already married but still had separate car insurance, I got my dividend check. I want to say it was for $75. Being young and dumb (and poor), I decided I wanted a ring. No, I deserved a ring. I cashed that check and had that money in my hot little hand at the mall one day. Also at the mall that day was a radio telethon for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. We give to them monthly, but I heard a voice in me say I should donate that money. As I shopped, that voice didn’t go away, but neither did my determination. I ended the day with a beautiful 5 stone blue topaz ring set in gold. Oh how it sparkled! You know what I discovered about that dang ring? It hurt to wear it! It was so wide that the sides would poke my other fingers the few times I wore it. After a while, it was hard to even look at it.
I don’t have that ring anymore, but I still have the lessons it taught me. I better listen to the voice and I shouldn’t get so caught up in stuff. Years later I got a gift card and bought my first nice purse. I prayed that God would keep me from gripping it too tightly. I made a deal that if there was ever someone who wanted it, someone who needed to be shown love, that I would give it gladly. You know, I loved that purse, but I knew not to love it too much. I did find someone to give it to at the right time and that felt great!
Now I try to listen when I should be giving instead of taking. Sometimes God lets me use money the way I want, and sometimes He nudges me to give. It isn’t that God NEEDS my money, but He wants my heart to only cherish HIM. When I get too wrapped up in my life, my way, He certainly lets me know. What I am finding is that I don’t ever want to desire an object more than I want to show someone God’s love. It certainly isn’t easy, but sacrifices aren’t supposed to be easy.
I am learning how true Proverbs is where it says that when I give freely I gain even more. When I let go of something that has potential to weigh me down, I gain wisdom and peace that won’t be taken from me.
My bright and shiny heart is worth so much more than bright and shiny jewelry that will fade.