Someone asked me recently why I wear a red string on my left wrist if I’m not Jewish.
My answer: Because it’s the best reminder I’ve ever had, in all my days, about the importance of taking responsibility when it comes to asking for what I want, and shifting my focus away from my problems and to the wonders that are God.
Supposedly the story of the red string is inspired by Rachel, second wife to Jacob. She was known to be very loving and kind, but still endured a lot of struggle. At one point she and her family had to move, and her father withheld her inheritance from her, so she stole some of his gold idols.
She also wanted children, but couldn’t seem to conceive. Finally, at her wits end, she demands of Jacob to give her a baby, or else she’ll just die. Jacob’s response is not very supportive.
It’s God who hears her prayers (not Jacob) and Rachel eventually does have two children.
Sadly she dies after giving birth to her second son. She was placed in a tomb, and to this day people will wrap red wool string around her tomb to embody it with her strength and kindness.
Her story reminds me of how important it is to ask for what we truly want, and then to trust in our indwelling spirit. When we struggle with conditions in our life, make demands of others, manipulate situations, etc., we are demonstrating a lack of faith in ourselves, and a lack of faith in God.
It’s only when we get clarity on what we desire, start walking by faith, and focus on the wonders that are God, that we finally call forth solutions, bright ideas, and opportunities that allow for greater good in our lives.
This red string reminds me not to be overly focused on my problems, but rather to think on the good and the lovely, and the power that created me to be a creator in the first place.