Rings of Promise
by Abby Tran
Every time I think about a promise, I think about my wedding rings. Marriage in and of itself is such a beautiful institution, and it's no wonder that Jesus uses it as an example of His relationship with the church. He explained it in such a way that we would understand. I have loved my family members deeply and unconditionally, and my love for them was the strongest I had ever experienced until I met my husband. Now, I love Mack more than I can even express in words – he is my supporter, my encourager, my soul mate, my one and only, my best friend. I would die for that man. He is the one I want to share funny stories and my fun facts with. Even in our worst times, there is no one else I would rather fall back into the arms of at the end of the day. There is something so exquisite about a love like this, and Jesus knew that. If Mack's love is the most wonderful love I have ever humanly experienced, it cannot even be compared to the love that God has for us and His church. And the promises He has made, He intends to keep.
Mack and I fell in love in the fall of 2013. Two falls after that, he got down on one knee and asked me to be his forever. He gave me the engagement ring that once belonged to his mother and conveyed that it represented the long-lasting marriage of his own parents that he very much desired. At our wedding, Mack made promises to me as he slipped a gold band on my left ring finger, swearing before God and our friends and family that he would never leave nor forsake me, that he would love me in sickness and in health, for better or for worse until death parts us. In return, I made those same promises, giving him a ring of his own as a reminder to both of us. Afterwards, we kissed and people cheered, flowers were thrown and cake was eaten, and now over a year later, I still consider it one of the best days of my life.
Mack is my best friend and our wedding day was the best day of my life. My relationship with him is the closest I can get to understanding the love that God has for me. The only problem is that Mack is human. Yes, I believe that he will love and take care of me, and that he will not leave me on account of sickness or poverty. But so did my mom's dad, and my dad's mom, and my neighbor's mom, and my friend's brother...I'm not saying that divorce is even an option for me and Mack, but what I am saying is that we are human. I cannot rely on Mack and Mack cannot rely on me; not for everything anyway. We are reminded of the promises we made to each other every day signified in our rings, but we are in no way capable of always doing what is best for the other, under every circumstance, for whatever reasons, for as long as we live, because we are human. But oh how wonderful it is to know that God has given me someone who is going to try their darned best.
While Mack is certainly my biggest fan and will do his utmost to ensure my safety and security, and who probably knows me better than anyone, God's knowledge of the desires of my heart and of my journey through this life, He surmounts what Mack provides by an infinity. He knows the plans He has for me – He knows what is best for me and He has promised to never harm me, to provide a way out when I cannot take anymore, to be with me when my enemy prevails, and to give me life everlasting with Him. If that isn't just the most magnificent thing you have ever heard, then the ocean is dry and there are no stars in the sky.
In this increasingly ugly and god-forsaken world, it can seem like no one can be trusted and that there is no hope. But God has promised us riches in heaven, peace that passes all understanding, and an unfailing love that will continue on when everything else ends. When I am afraid and at a loss, feeling completely unprepared for what lay ahead, I look at my rings and remember that this too shall pass and God knows exactly what He's doing. And He's coming for me.
My name is Abby Tran, I graduated from Harding University with a BA in Education. My husband's name is Mack and we have two cats named Charlie and Mira. I am from Virginia and Mack is from British Columbia. I have a fierce love for nature and Jesus, and I want very badly to find beauty in everything.