This past week held a lot for the Paul family. James and I celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary, my grandfather turned 87, my daughter turned 16, and we had a delicious Thanksgiving with James' family and my Mom.
Bud and Grama Judy ~ makin' gravey
Cassia's present from us was a Covenant Ring. Some people call them Promise Rings, but I've decided that name doesn't take it far enough for me. In our day and age of "promises were made to be broken" it didn't seem right for a symbol of something so important to be associated with a "promise". We wanted Cassia to have a visual reminder of Who's she is... it isn't simply about purity, and saving herself for marriage, but that her heart is devoted to someOne even now and she must be undistracted in that heart devotion. Her covenant was established long before the ring was presented. She chose to serve and love God alone when she was still tiny, and now that she is on the verge of womanhood the covenant will be tested. Giving her this ring was a way of giving her an anchor. The purpose of an anchor is to provide stability, to help in 'staying the course' even during storms. I'm so excited for her! I don't think she needed the ring - ships may go on several voyages without ever using their anchors, but they are there, offering their assurance. It's been a paradigm shift for me to move away from the defensive strategy of "purity" to the offensive one of "undistracted devotion". This covenant isn't about keeping yourself from something, but giving yourself so fully to someOne that you have eyes (& heart) for no one & nothing else.
Rom 8:24 That is why waiting does not diminish us, any more than waiting diminishes a pregnant mother. We are enlarged in the waiting. We, of course, don't see what is enlarging us.
Rom 8:25 But the longer we wait, the larger we become, and the more joyful our expectancy. (msg.)
1Co 15:58 With all this going for us, my dear, dear friends, stand your ground. And don't hold back. Throw yourselves into the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste.
1Jo 3:1 What marvelous love the Father has extended to us! Just look at it--we're called children of God! That's who we really are. But that's also why the world doesn't recognize us or take us seriously, because it has no idea who He is or what He's up to.
1Jo 3:2 But friends, that's exactly who we are: children of God. And that's only the beginning. Who knows how we'll end up! What we know is that when Christ is openly revealed, we'll see him--and in seeing him, become like him.
1Jo 3:3 All who have this hope, stay ready, with the glistening purity of Jesus' life as a model for our own. (msg.)
mmm... Ciders, Cocoa and Covenant ... warms you to your toes, doesn't it?!