Have you ever had something that meant a lot to you? A treasure of sorts that held precious memories, helped you get through the rough times, something you just couldn't let go of?
I have a long sleeved t-shirt I got my freshman year of college, just about twenty years ago, that I still dig out of the drawer on a day when I just need a little comfort or I'm sick. There are holes all in it, the letters of my alma mater are all faded, yet it is like an old faithful friend. Every time I put it on, it just makes me feel better. Yet, I know the day is coming, real soon, that it will have to be discarded. It's value diminishes with every wash.
The other day, on our way to church, my son looks down and says;
"Mom, it is about time you get a new one."
I look down at the object that has captured his attention... my Bible.
The leather is worn. The binding is barely surviving. The pages no longer shine a brilliant gold.
The Bible was given to me by my parents in 1991. I was in college and had asked for a study bible. Being the note taker that I am, well there are precious reminders, notes to self and stars marking that special verse found.
I love looking through it's pages during a sermon and compare notes of two different points of view over one verse. I love the ease at which I can find favorite scripture. I love to reread the prayers I've written in the margins as reminders of promises I've made to my Lord. I love all the memories this precious book has held for me through the years.
Memories of college life and soul searching. (I rededicated my life to Christ while in college.)
Moments of young married life that were tough. (Like putting my hubby through seminary, while working at a very stressful job.)
Working through the fear of pregnancy and parenthood. (Receiving two precious blessings and the strength to deal with the loss of another.)
Wisdom as a minister's wife. (Knowing how to be "quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry." during the extreme joys as well as in the really tough times of ministry life.)
Dealing with the loss of those who are very near and dear to our hearts. (The death of three grandparents within one year can be brutal.)
Dealing with self and my total imperfectness. (If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know I have my days.)
But most of all, growing in my relationship with the Lord. (My Heavenly Father, my faithful friend, my guide, my protector and my salvation.)
I look up at my son and simply say;
"Jordan, I don't want a new one. I think I will keep my old faithful friend, if you don't mind."
I had to explain to him that it is not about needing a new Bible. Shoot! I'm a minister's wife, we have every kind of bible in every size imaginable lining our bookshelf as I type. But rather it is about the precious memories and treasure that THIS bible holds for me.
I might need a new case from time to time. But I can't stand the thought of discarding it. Unlike my shirt, it's value DOESN'T diminish with every use. In fact, it only seems to get more valuable with time.
I think I will keep this Bible for now.
But I was thinking about whether I could make a pillow or something out of my favorite old shirt..."
"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Matthew 6:21