I have this necklace that I found at a Christmas fair several years ago that seemed to symbolize a piece of me still reaching for childlike faith. I was scraping bottom every time I dipped down into the well of my creativity to bring up another drink. It was as if the well had sprung a leak. The necklace is a mini journal circled by an elastic loop, which, when it’s slipped off, reveals empty pages all made from different papers. To people who know me, it’s just another funky “find”, like a lot of my jewelry; a folk art piece made from a recycled children’s book cover in the style of Little Golden Books. But, to the children in my life, it isn’t jewelry. To them it’s a tiny book and they want to know what’s inside. They are the ones who touch it, open it, and are disappointed that it is blank. But I know what it says.
I love symbols that call up strength and hope and remind me I am enough, because life wants to tell me the reverse is true. I will choose to wear a meaningful ring, necklace or bracelet especially on days when I need to be brave. Wearing my mother’s jewelry, what little there is of it, is my favorite way to carry flinty resolve with me like a secret clue to a truth that I’m afraid I’ll forget.
The days are long and our lessons, hard-won, and we have need of endurance. I love this about my Good Good Father; he gave me a frail self so that I would carry in my skin the promise of triumph to be found only in his sufficient and active grace. He meant for us to feel this way. Weakness, our guarantee of what’s really true. I am always moving in my own power, but ever reminded that I am helped, like a symbol around my neck, ringing my finger, pinned to my chest.
We have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 2 Corinthians 4:7