A love of history has been birthed in me over the past few years. I now find myself picking up books like the Biography of William Wilderforce, and I find myself now walking through antique shops, looking and purchasing old treasures. We might be about to purchase my grandparent’s home, an old house that my mother grew up in, and make it beautiful again, with vintage things, of course. I am not sure what exactly sparked this love, but it has turned into a roaring fire. I just love old things. I love pieces with a story, which is my draw to the old house, it has a story. The land it sits on, it has a story as well. This morning, as I was getting dressed in my closet for church, I glanced into my jewelry box to match up something with my dress, and I grabbed this jade ring that once belonged to my mother. It is an antique, it is vintage, it does have a story. I happily placed it on my finger and ran downstairs to start preparing the Sunday morning breakfast for the hungry children. As I was setting the table I showed the kids my ring. They weren’t super impressed. They weren’t impressed that is, until I shared the story. My dad bought my mother this ring back about 45 years ago, and about forty years ago, my parents house burned to the ground. It was the day after Christmas, my parents were at work and my sister was a baby at a sitters house, and they weren’t home to save anything. Since it burned while they were away, it was a total loss. Days later when the dust and ashes had settled, they rummaged through the debri and rubbage to see if anything had been salvaged. To their disgust and despair, every treasure had been lost. Baby pictures of my sister, their wedding photos, wedding gifts, and everything they owned in this life was destroyed, but their joy was knowing that God protected their lives. This was truly devastating for them both, but God used this situation to pull His church together to minister to my parents and it became a turning point in my dad’s life in his becoming a christian. While searching through the burn pile my mother found this ring. It was damaged a bit, but still very much beautiful, and the only surviving object of the fire. This is the ring I wore today and I thanked God for His providence over that house fire.
Today during the preaching at church, a Scripture that was read was a passage that is very dear to my heart, Titus 2. This chapter has a picture of some beautiful antiques. Women that are antiques. Antiques are something that is older, beautiful, has some history, and has tremendous value. There are so many antique women that God has surrounded me with, they ever so softly pour into my life. They quietly live a life before me that is faithful and consistent in their love for the Lord. They walk beside me at church encouraging me. They sit beside me at fellowships laughing with me about the joys and struggles of motherhood. They cry with me telling me of regrets and advice on things I should consider that they would do differently if they had the time back again. Recently in Awana, I was chatting with one of these precious antiques and we were discussing this old house remodel, fixer upper, that Josh and I are considering. I was telling her of options and plans we were thinking about for the house. With tears in this woman’s eyes, then rolling down her check, she said, “don’t put your boys in the basement!” She went on to explain, “we put bedrooms in the basement for our older children when they were little, and it’s the worst thing we did for our family. I can look back and see where we divided the family, causing problems from that day on. If I had to do it over again, we would have made room for us all together upstairs and made different options.” It truly made me consider her words. I know that’s not the case for every family, I know basements are not the evil divider of families, but she had a story. She had a lesson. She was passing on a gold nugget of wisdom and a trap the enemy had set for her family. When we surround ourselves, especially in the local church body, with these precious women, they might, just maybe, keep us from being ensnared in the enemies trap. Even if we avoid one trap it could be the trap that causes our kids to stumble. I cannot measure the value of the many investments these precious ladies have made in my life, even from the time I was a little girl.
I love old things. I love aged things. I love things with a story. I love treasures. I love history. Sometimes these things are right beside us, if we would just look and listen.
Titus 2:3-5 “Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.”