A Turkish friend is very superstitious. The other day, as we walked across a field dotted with ant hills, she stopped, bent over and picked up a pinch of dirt from seven different ant hills and placed them in a small baggie in her wallet. “This will bring me good luck and more money,” she explained. Once she wore a small brightly colored ribbon tied around her finger. This, she said was to bring good fortune to her son.
My friend is not a backward person. She’s beautiful, gracious and intelligent and is not above following superstitions in an attempt to improve her lot in life. She’s not alone; players and sports fans across the country adopt pregame rituals to try to appeal to some greater power. My friend thinks of me as a little square for not embracing superstitious practices. Why would I resort to such rituals when I know that the God who made me holds me in the palm of his hand?
I can be at peace with the future, because the God has told me that he will never let me go. He will never cease hearing my prayers and answering them. But sometimes I can forget the truth. Hardship, stress, and temptations all work to distract me from the reality of the Father’s love. Solomon understood this when he wrote:
“My son, keep your father’s commands and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. bind them upon your heart forever; fasten them around your neck.” Proverbs 6:20-21
“Bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart.” Proverbs 7:3
“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.” Proverbs 3:3
Another friend who has memorized 30 specific scriptures. In the morning, she lays on the floor, calms her soul and repeats and meditates on those passages. She allows God to write his word on the “tablet of her heart.” I have another friend who reminds herself of God’s love every time she sees a heart. That simple physical reminder has drawn her closer to God. I wear a simple gold cross around my neck. In itself, it has no power, but like my wedding ring, it reminds me of who I belong to.
How do you “bind” God’s word to you? Do you have a daily practice or habit that has helped you keep your heart close to God?