This is what happens when you are careless!
I have a pair of earrings that are one my favorite Christmas gifts. My mother put them in my stocking approximately ten years ago, when I was in my forties. They are 14k gold hoops with 3 stones on each. A Citrine, a Peridot and an Amethyst. These represent the birthstones for myself and my two grandmothers. I do not have a lot of real gold jewelry, this gift is very meaningful to me. Even more so because I loved my grandmothers so very much and I feel them with me most of the time. Wearing their stones with mine is a tribute to the connectedness we have.
I realize that I am careless by nature. I don’t pick up after myself until I am ready for my place to be clean or until I need something that I can’t find. I don’t make my bed. It has gotten so bad at times that my cats would take up residence on top of a pile of clothes in my bedroom!
On this particular day I wanted to wear the earrings. I do not remember what clothing I was wearing or whether I was going to work or to church or what day it was.
I opened my jewelry box to get the earrings… they were not there!
They were not on the makeup table. On the nightstand? No. I started a methodical search through the house. Starting with the obvious places where I tend to put small things. I looked on top of the microwave. I checked my computer desk and the little dish I keep there for pennies and post-its and paperclips. I checked the shelf by the washing machine.
I looked on the end tables in the living room. There was a TV tray, one of the wooden kind, next to the recliner and I looked there. I looked under every pile of everything that was piled up anywhere!
I could feel myself start to panic. What would I tell my mother? She always kept things from me when I was a child and young adult because she didn’t want me to lose them. Once, a kid broke into my apartment and stole my small jewelry box which contained my wedding jewelry, a 14k gold charm bracelet and several pieces of sentimental costume jewelry. So I understood her concern. Now finally she trusted me enough to have given me these earrings that were precious and valuable and I had actually lost them!
The only place I had not searched yet was the bathroom. There was a small pile of silver jewelry next to the sink, I went through it carefully. No gold earrings there. I checked the drawer and the cupboards, no earrings there either.
Stepping back into the hallway, shaking with anxiety, I stopped and said a prayer.
“Dear God, I need your help. I have lost the gold earrings my mother gave me. I love these earrings and I obviously do not deserve them because I didn’t take better care and now I can’t find them. Please help me, not for myself because I know I don’t deserve it, but for my mother, so that she won’t be hurt by my stupid carelessness. Thank you Lord, In Jesus name, Amen”
I remember the exact words of that prayer all these years later because that is how important this was to me and how upset and disappointed I was feeling.
Without thinking about what I was doing now, I walked back to that wooden TV tray and started to reach for a pile of stuff. My hand stopped midway there. I could not believe my eyes! There were my earrings! In plain sight, not under a pile of anything else!
I had looked there already! I know I did because I had moved everything around. I know without a doubt that those earrings were not there when I was looking for them!
I snatched them up and closed my hand around them, feeling the cool metal on the palm of my hand. Closing my eyes, I lifted my face toward heaven and silently thanked God and thanked the Angel who was sent to put the earrings where I could find them. This was one of the times in my life when I felt completely filled with gratitude and relief!
Happily I put them on and went about my day. I said nothing about this to anyone for a long time. Now and then when I am involved in a conversation about angels I share this story. I really believe there are angels with us all the time, but they are just waiting to be asked to help us. For me, this story proves it.
I am still a slob about housekeeping. I work at it. I have gotten rid of a lot of things that I wasn’t using and didn’t need to simplify my life somewhat. I still have little piles here and there but I have more drawers and I generally know what is in them. When I change purses I always make sure to get everything out of the purse I am putting away and at least put the small miscellaneous things by my computer if not in a drawer. I am trying to be more diligent.
I have learned some things from this incident. I have learned that God cares about what I care about. I have learned that God honors humility. I have learned that there is an angel with me willing to help at any time. I have learned that material things have meaning not because of the worldly value, but because of the connections to loved ones represented in the gift.
In 2008 when my son decided to ask his girlfriend to marry him, I gathered up all of my gold jewelry so he could get credit against the cost of the engagement ring. I gave him the diamond from my wedding set to use in the ring he was having custom made for his beloved. I did not give him these earrings.
I never have misplaced those earrings again. I know exactly where they are at any moment. I have them under lock and key!
Readers: Please leave comments! Any comments about how this story may have touched you, something you may have learned, something you disagree with, mistakes in my writing and spelling, anything at all because it helps be become a better writer! Thank you.