Joan C. Benson, Christian Author, Speaker, & Educator

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up…”
1 Thessalonians 5:11

The Ring: My Legacy and Inheritance

Joan C. Benson

I tugged open the drawer of my jewelry box, my emotions awash with memories. The night my mother slipped into eternity, I slid her wedding band onto my finger, feeling the weight of its significance. Yet, I would learn even more from this ring in the years to come.

My father had a beautiful platinum wedding band made for Mom after many years of marriage. Having wed during The Great Depression with no money for extras, this diamond studded ring was Dad’s thanks for her being there through the good seasons and the bad.

Dad had been a frequent top salesman for his company, and for that distinction, he had been awarded “pins.” Almost annually, he was presented with a new recognition pin, often adorned with one tiny diamond to symbolize his success. Dad simply tucked them away in a drawer year after year. When the time was right, Dad suggested they have a jeweler make a new wedding band, using his tiny diamonds to cluster around a slightly larger stone. She chose her setting, and the ring was soon made to their specifications.

After my mom passed away, my husband queried, “Do you want to have it resized so you can wear it?”

“It’s so much more like my mom than me,” I countered, dismissing his idea. Mom was an attractive brunette who dressed with flair, and enjoyed splashy costume jewelry, perfectly accessorizing her outfits. Those pieces always looked wonderful on her. Me? I tended to be more of a minimalist who donned the same yellow gold necklace almost daily.

“Well, we could have the ring reset if you’d like,” my husband encouraged.

I felt guilty even contemplating the thought. It was as if it were a sacred extension of my mother. So, it sat, undisturbed in my jewelry box for three years.

Then one day as I studied the Scriptures, I came across Psalm 139:13-14 once again. “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous–how well I know it,” Psalm 139:13-14 (NLT).

A sense of freedom welled up in me as I contemplated her ring with new insight. Just as mother and I were distinctly different, this precious ring symbolized not only my parents’ legacy, but our distinct uniqueness. “Yet you, LORD, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand,” Isaiah 64:8 (NLT). The Lord saw me before I was born, and He knew each of us as He formed us.

I thought of my mother and how dissimilar we had been. She used to laugh saying, “Where did you come from?” because we were nearly antithetical at times. We were mother and daughter, biologically linked, yet as different as we could be. Bound by mutual respect and love, shared family history, and a love for God, we loved each other–despite our contrasting traits.

Instead of guilt that I would destroy something of my mother’s, I saw how symbolic it would be if I did change the setting. Father God is not surprised that we are distinctively different beings, and Mother’s ring is a constant and beautiful reminder of how uniquely He created each of us. Today I wear “our ring,” though now the small diamonds are set in a simpler band of yellow gold. Now it represents all three of us. I believe my parents would both approve.  Their legacy of life and faith has shaped who I am, built the foundation of my life, and I will be forever grateful for this inheritance. But, I am not my mother, or my father. I am an extension of their lives, a unique creation made in the image of God–and this is no surprise to my Heavenly Father.

Originally Published at https://bensonjj.blog/2018/05/10/the-ring-my-legacy-and-inheritance/ on .
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