“Maybe God wants you to go alone. Leave the kids and I here. See us on weekends…”
My twelve-year-old heart was crushed and confused as I listened to my parents. God had slammed into our family with grace and gumption the previous year when I witnessed my dad’s dramatic conversion from alcoholic to born-again Christian. But what was happening? Was my family going to crumble now that we had a foundation of faith?
“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert” (Isaiah 43:19).
Following Jesus was still very fresh for my parents, sisters, and me. We observed something special in the way God ignited a passion in my dad’s heart for sharing the gospel once he discovered the truth, and he had a burning desire to preach to anyone who would listen. He needed to consume this brand new, life-changing theology in huge gulps—preferably full-time at Bible School. Thus began the discussions with my mother regarding a new chapter in our lives.
In fairness, my sweet mom was going with the flow as a new Christian herself, and the plan looked doable as they considered the Bible school located close to our home on the beautiful south coast of England. But when my dad announced he felt God calling him to go study in Wales—uprooting us all from our family, friends, and everything familiar—things got a little frosty at home, to say the least.
It was then that my mom suggested that perhaps God was only calling my dad, not necessarily the rest of us. It was a four hour drive to Wales and perfectly acceptable for him to come home on weekends. We would have the support of friends and family close by during the week. It would be fine.
My dad, however, refused to believe God would call him alone and want him to live separately from his family, especially now that alcohol no longer played a part and we were enjoying a healthy, normal life together.
It might have been summertime, but those frosty vibes were palpable to all.
“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful” (Hebrews 10:23).
In an effort to maintain some level of normalcy, we embarked upon a family day in the sand, sea, and sun. The beaches in Bournemouth are stunning and I was pretty much raised in a beach hut on the promenade—so this was our happy place.
Only on this particular day, it was not so happy.
After a refreshing swim, my dad emerged from the sea only to discover his ring had disappeared into the deep. Not just any ring—his wedding ring. That precious band of gold signifying marriage and love and togetherness with his wife, was gone. My mom’s face fell. Surely this lost ring was a lightning bolt sign from above that my dad was to go alone to Bible school in Wales. It was concrete confirmation in her eyes.
For my faith-full dad, it was quite the opposite. He was sure we would find that lost wedding ring and that would be the sign God was calling us as a family.
Bold move, Dad.
And so, for my sisters, parents, and I, the pathetic treasure hunt began. Needle in a haystack? Try a tiny gold band in an ocean with waves and tides and shells and currents. Needless to say, the search was fruitless, leaving everyone depleted and frustrated as we eventually headed home. What was God doing?
… to find out what happened and how God used a miracle to show His faithfulness to our little family, I’d love you to hop over HERE to my post in JOYFUL LIFE MAGAZINE. I have the joy of writing for them—I think you’ll like it there! 🙂
Happy reading… and let me know your thoughts!
Until next time,
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