Sunday, February 19

ring, check

I am one of those girls who checks for a ring on every man's left hand.

Not because I need to see if he's available, or to see what style he is sporting, but because it tells me a lot about who that man might be.

We (me, Alex, Tom, God, people) have been talking a lot lately about being courageous. There is a song about the characteristic we were made to have, there is a movie moving the whole country to tears, and the sermons and lessons and homework have all been speaking about being courageous. Pastor Kim says 'a single act of courageous risk' can change your whole life, all of your faith, and who you think your God is.

And when I see a man with a wedding band, I think about the courage he must have. Maybe he is the kind of man who knew she had every reason to say no, but asked anyway. Maybe he is the kind who married her when someone else told him not to. Maybe he is the kind who had a baby with her when he was seventeen and stayed anyway. Maybe he is the man who resisted temptation all day today, and yesterday, and the days before that. Maybe he is the man who chose to forgive her when she didn't resist temptation. Maybe he is the man who has gone through years and years of rehab, or maybe a few weeks of counseling. Maybe he is the man who never knew Jesus, but now he does because she asked him to. Maybe he is the man who is working two jobs, or maybe he's been laid off; maybe he's the man who washes all the dishes, cleans all the clothes, or maybe he just comes home and rubs her shoulders because she's done all of that, instead.

All of these qualities required one single act, great risk, great courage. All men are being told that being single, sleeping around, throwing parties, getting wasted, being "free" is the real man's way of life. The old 'ball and chains' at home are just dragging them down, killing them slowly, day by day. But those men wearing rings, they know differently. And the risk they took-leaving the old ways behind, letting go of the party days-to choose her, choose family, was courageous. By choosing to live for someone other than themselves was the most courageous they will ever do.

And yes, I know some of those rings are false emblems of false vows and false lives, but let's just pretend that every man wearing a wedding band has a deep desire to do something courageous, something brave, something risky. Let’s pretend, for today, those rings are as romantic is we hope them to be.

Men, stop watching shows about bachelorhood, "free weeks", singleness and drunkenness. You're simply pathetic, weak, little boys who will never be as brave as the married ones. I know this because I am married to a man who chose that ring even when I was ridiculously worried and fearful, full of disbelief in him and all things marriage, and crying hysterically for daaayyyys straight. I know how brave he is, because even I wouldn't have stayed through that mess.

He did, and he's the hero of this story, because He has a God bigger than him, leading and fighting the battle with him. Boys, men; choose courage, choose the good life, choose truth, choose to be the brave man you so desire to be. Instead of risky business, choose risky acts, acts that require faith, honesty and integrity. For Pete’s sake, the world, the whole world and all the women in it, will look a whole lot different if they have those kinds of knights and warriors.


  1. Alyssa! This is bold and wonderful and thought-provoking. Putting on that ring is such a courageous step, yes? And God's courage infinitely more so. Thanks for sharing this!

  2. I love this. said above...very thought-provoking. I wish men in our country would be more encouraged with truth like this...instead of tearing each other down. Thank God for the grace that He has provided to each and every one of us to cover our bad choices with his love.