Archive for November, 2009

         I’ve been stringing pearls…a string for a dear friend’s birthday, and a string for myself – one of my favorite strands had broken. It reminded me that I had read some very interesting things lately about pearls, and I thought I would share them with you. Many cultures revere the pearl, and it is often considered a very precious gem, second only to the diamond.

        I read a lovely novel entitled “Anna and Her Daughters” by E.B. Stevenson in which one of the girls is given an extremely valuable strand of pearls to wear, but the pearls are “sick” and unrecognizable. You see, from what I understand from the novel, pearls need some moisture, or they dry out and become “sick.” The idea was that the girl would wear the pearls and see if their lustre would return. (I won’t tell you what they represented or what happened in case you want to read the book!) Using my trusty search engine, I tried to discover if this was something that would truly occur – that pearls would deteriorate if not worn, and possibly return to  their prior beauty if worn. I found an legendary reference to in the New York Times from 1892 to some sick pearls belonging to the Archduchess Rainier. According to the legend, her pearls had become sick from disuse, and a special locked cage had been designed for them, and they had been immersed in the Adriatic, where they were slowly regaining their lustre (the small part of the article that I was able to read can be found here http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9B0DE6DA1E39E033A25755C0A96F9C94639ED7CF). The Archduchess Ranier is reported to have been Carlotta, wife of Maximilian, Emperor of Mexico, who built Castle Miramar. Another archduchess,  Princess Maria Immaculata of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, loved pearls,  for her husband gave her a string of pearls with the birth of each of her ten children.

Miramar Castle on the Adriatic Sea, below which the pearls were supposedly submerged

        Apparently, none of this is true. However, experts do state that pearls need some moisture to retain their beauty. So, ladies, wear your pearls. Don’t let them languish in the jewelry box! I believe in using beautiful things – there is a lesson in the fact that the beauty of pearls diminish over time if not appreciated through use…. 

(Thanks to G.Kunz’s book “The Book of the Pearl” which helped me in my little search for the truth of the story about the Archduchess’s pearls. The book is out of print, and some of it can be viewed online…or you may purchase it from Amazon for $1400.00. No, rather, skip it and go buy some pearls….)

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Isn’t that what we’re all looking for? Is this not the greatest longing of women’s hearts – to be needed, to be important, to be loved?

I watch people all the time – I like to find out what makes them tick. Sometimes the habits that are the most aggravating are ones that are motivated by the search for significance. Have you been around a neurotic lately? What about someone who toots their own horn? Why do people exhibit these behaviors? I can only imagine that it is because they feel insignificant, and are trying to attain some significance in their own eyes (and in others) through sickness or bragging.  It is my theory that this search for significance  is the reason why the Twilight books have so resonated with women – even women who were slightly abashed to admit that they had read and loved them…Edward is so beyond the plane of human existence – attractive, gifted, immortal, wealthy, and he falls in love with a very ordinary woman, giving her such unusual significance. It is the romantic ideal. Wouldn’t we all love to be given such significance, even in the eyes of one?

What does it take for us to feel this significant? I would suggest that it is different for everyone. I think some women feel adequately significant with the faithful love of one man. Others are fulfilled simply by the knowlege of God’s love for them and His intervention in their lives. That covers two aspects of this topic…but what about the people who are insatiable? Those whom never feel significant enough no matter how much attention and love they are given? What makes them the way they are? You can tell, you know…Some behaviors simply scream “Look at me! Love me! Please tell me that I am the most amazing (or loving, or giving, or talented, or famous, or wealthy, or gorgeous) person around!”

How many of us feel this significant? If you are fortunate to feel this, and do not need to “self-significate”, you are one of the lucky ones! When I’m viewing someone’s behavior as unbelieveable, it’s helping me to remember why people may be acting the way they do…and it makes me analyze my own behavior, as well…are my behaviors making me appear desperate for significance? As I age and become more secure in myself, what little habits that draw attention to me can I forego? Lots to think about….

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awaI kenthedawncover

Just discovered these artists about this time last year and was captivated by the quality of the songwriting. Hymnlike lyrics are rare these days, and Keith Getty is proving himself of the same caliber of Fanny Crosby and Isaac Watts. Occasionally, I’m afraid that in our day of Christian Contemporary praise music (which I do enjoy and believe has a necessary place) the value of a theologically-rich, complex hymn has been forgotten.  Thankfully, Keith Getty has a gift for continuing the tradition. The Getty’s first album In Christ Alone established the theme, and Awaken the Dawn continues it. Lush strings, merry Celtic rhythms, and the occasional strain of bagpipes play host to Kristyn’s lovely voice singing praises to the Creator. Let it encourage you!

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