day 08 - joy of love - gift from the heart / by Carey

Day 09 for the Joy of Love mini-course was Gift from the Heart -- what they have said, done, promised, given.

Oh, how many things I could have shot for this!!!  But in the end, I decided to go with my crown necklace.

Shortly after we were married, I read "Wild At Heart" by John Eldredge.  I felt like I was reading the manual to my husband.  It explained so very much about the masculine outlook on life that I just had no idea about previously.  I am forever grateful to John Eldredge for writing this book and keeping me from inadvertently trying to emasculate my husband and future sons.  When I heard, though, that they were writing a version for women, I could hardly contain my excitement.  "Captivating" by John and Stasi Eldredge proved to be no less than everything I expected it to be.  It spoke to my heart more than nearly anything I've ever read before.

When I was a little girl and twirled before my father, asking the question that every little girl asks ("Am I lovely?  Am I beautiful?  Am I worth saving?  Am I the beauty to rescue?")... the answer I felt was "no".

Just becoming aware of these longings and feelings that are the essence of my being female was extremely healing.  Realizing that even though my earthly father didn't affirm those longings in me, my Heavenly Father does find me lovely.  He does find me beautiful.  He does find me worth saving.  Very much so.  And yet there is still that earthly part that wants to be found those things by someone else here on earth.

Shawn has most certainly stepped up to that role.  I strove so very hard for all my life, studying, achieving, working to be the best... to go a place I didn't even know I was going.  I worked as a chemical engineer out in the 'real world' for 3.5 years.  And it sucked the life out of me from the inside out.  It was awful.  Just awful.  On top of that, I felt God's gentle tug at my heart that I needed to put Him first, and put my family first.  We finally made the decision that I would 'retire' from Corporate America. I would become a stay at home wife.  Well before I was ready to become a mom.  A very strange cultural decision.

When I quit, Shawn gave me a gift.  From his heart.  He went on the quest to find a necklace with a crown.  Even though I'd never felt like a princess to anyone in my life, he asked me if I'd now be his princess.  I wish I'd written about the gift then when the emotions were fresh and raw.  But I didn't.

I wear the necklace often, and I often wonder if Shawn really understands the significance to me.