Yesterday, I decided to do away with one of my most valued possessions: This tiny crown ring on my pinky finger. It’s one of the few things I have an attachment to and the first ring that’s ever stayed with me for much longer than a few months and weeks. And, it’s also the one I got for myself to serve as a promise ring between me and God. After a year or so of holding on to it, and to the promise, despite my mom’s offer to buy me a new one, why did I decide to finally let it go?
Apart from the fact that it’s very tarnished already, I figured that my attachment to it has become a little too much. Nothing wrong with having it serve as a reminder that God has promised me a beautiful thing. But, clearly something’s wrong with being too preoccupied with the story and meaning behind it.
It’s wonderful. It’s from God, that I’m sure of. But it isn’t so wonderful when I start to look forward to the fulfillment so much so that I fail to enjoy many amazing happenings in my life right now. I’m beyond grateful to know that something’s in store for me in the future, but I’m getting frustrated at why it isn’t happening sooner.
Every time I see the ring, I feel very excited. At last, something to hold on to that symbolizes His promise. Something to show for when His timing fails. His timing has had a lot of delays in the past, and I wasn’t going to let the same thing happen with the promise behind my ring. It was okay, until I got too caught up in it, and it had to go, the same way my mentality had to go.
I love that ring, but if that’s the only thing I choose to see God in, when He’s obviously been present in so many aspects of my life, then I had to expand the horizon, even if it meant that it should be gone for good.
It’s true that God is a God of promises, but in this context, it seemed as if I made God tantamount to that single promise, when He is way more than that. God has made plenty of promises to me in the past, and He kept them all, albeit gradually, slowly, in ways I never expected. He surprises, and that often didn’t sit well with me.
But God is a God of surprises, and as someone who’s waited it out for years and wrestled with Him for virtually her entire lifetime, I’d rather find excitement than frustration in waiting on Him anew. And, whatever it is that keeps me from being joyful, excited, and productive as I wait, has to go.
While I function perfectly, and so, am productive, my mind was tied down to one train of thought, and it sucked the joy out of me and my relationship with God. It got stuck on a single promise and ceased to grow from there.
Throughout all these shenanigans about my faulty and limited mentality and my attachment to the ring, what have I learned about God?
He’s a God of surprises, and if you’re in a relationship with Him, or at least, want a relationship with Him, you’ll learn to take those surprises positively, whether they’re pleasant or not. God will not change His knack for surprises, so unless you’re planning to live miserably, or in a limited manner, then adjust your mindset. Live with the surprises, and enjoy them.
He’s way more than a promise. Don’t limit what He can do with, for, and through you to a single promise of what’s yet to happen. He’s more than that. He’s the here and now, and the beyond. If you choose to see more than just a promise, you’re bound to see Him everywhere in your life.
He will never hold you down; He will always lift you up. These past few months, I thought that God must want me to stay put and just do PA job to people He blesses until He decides to bless me. What I didn’t notice is that He’s been blessing me all along, and though I was able to make the most of it, I wasn’t able to find joy in, and praise Him for, it, which was a shame. But, what I wasn’t able to do doesn’t lessen what He was able to do.
He wants you to live in the moment with unabashed joy. Before I threw the ring away, He told me to stay open to the fulfillment of that promise. But, as I do so, it doesn’t mean that I should constantly look over my shoulder or be preoccupied with just that. There are things He wants me to do and places He wants me to be in, right here, right now. The moment is very important; it’s the real-time invitation to recognize His hand at work in my life. And the “now” is to be lived with joy and not frustration, I learned.
Through this experience, I figured that sometimes, getting closer to God is throwing away the things we believe is the closest we can get to Him. I’m faulty and short-sighted, so there’s a risk of reducing Him into just one thing, when He is everything.
I began the year by ditching my precious promise ring, and in the process, learning something valuable and new about God and the nature of my relationship with Him. Through that, I feel as if God made me a new promise: that He’d surprise me, and that He’d always be so much more than one promise.
With or without a ring, I hold on to that. 🙂