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#storiesmatter: A Faith Story from Carol Knachel

This past Summer, we ran a Sermon Series focusing on individual faith stories. As part of that series, we began soliciting faith stories from members and constituents here at St. Stephen’s. Many people think their stories are too small, but often the process of articulating the story will help you to see a larger role God has played in your life, and you never know who may draw comfort or inspiration from reading or hearing your story shared. If you are interested in sharing your story, please contact Carol Knachel, knachel7[at]aol.com. Her story is below.
Bob went to his Heavenly reward on January 23, 2014. I took his wedding ring from his finger and placed it on a chain around my neck. I planned to wear it until his burial in Arlington on May 13, then on our anniversary, his birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and the one-year anniversary of his passing. Those day’s came and those days went. The ring remained on the chain around my neck. I felt comfort in slipping it on my finger and I did that often. One day, as I was walking down the hallway toward our living room, I softly prayed, “Dear God, what am I to do with Bob’s ring?” Immediately, I felt drawn about twelve steps ahead to our curio cabinet. This cabinet had been in the same place for over thirty years. I stood there for a few minutes, wondering why I was there. Just a few days before, I had polished the wood, cleaned the glass shelves and mirror, and dusted the treasures displayed there. I looked at each of the shelves. I realized that the top shelf, with Mary, Joseph and the Baby Jesus, represented Birth. The middle shelf, with a collection of items from our homes and travels, childhood to the present, represented Life. The bottom shelf, with the circle of angels and a recently added crystal cross from one of Bob’s funeral arrangements, represented Eternal Life. In all of these years, I had never thought of it in this way. I looked back at the middle shelf. There, in the far left, front corner, was Bob’s tiny baby ring! I immediately removed the chain and Bob’s ring from my neck and placed them around his baby ring. I felt a tremendous sense of peace and remembered a card I had received at his death. I reread the words:
God knows what you need before you know you need it.
Carol Knachel