Trust Me: Day 18 of 31 Days.
Click on the picture above for Day 1.
“There’s just one little catch,” the prince said, and Jewel’s body went ridged with the words.
How could there be a catch?
Ever since she met the prince, she had been waiting for a catch, but there wasn’t one. Over and over again, he had told her that she could not earn what he was giving her, and she could not pay it back.
She realized, then, that she had believed it, and she had been tricked.
“What’s the catch?” she asked, a hoarseness catching in her throat.
“You have to trust me, Jewel.” He said it softly, and with a serious kind of sadness, like he thought it would be a deal breaker.
“That’s it?” she cried, relief flooding over her. “I have to trust you?” She almost laughed because it was so simple. Of course she trusted him.
“You have to trust that I have indeed given you everything you need for life in my kingdom.”
“I can’t imagine why I would doubt that!” Jewel laughed. She was standing in a treasure box. What else could she possibly need from him?
“You are my bride now, and that comes with a very high calling.” His voice was still sad and serious. The delight he always had in calling her his bride was gone.
“Why are you so serious?” she asked. His demeanor was unnerving.
“Because, Jewel, I won’t always be with you.”
“What do you mean?”
“I have to go away on my father’s business—there is still so much to do—and you will have to stay here and continue the work I have for you, believing that I have equipped you to do it well.”
Jewel’s mind was a flood of questions, but she could not say any of them because her heart was drowning in a sudden, overwhelming grief. “How can you leave me?” she murmured. She had not been without him since the moment he found her by the side of the road, and she did not know how she could live without him now.
He smiled a small, sad smile, and she realized he grieved with her. “My darling, that is why it is the catch. You have to trust me. You have to trust that I would not leave you unless the work I have to do is exceedingly important. And you have to trust that if I go away from you for a time, I will come back again. I will always come back to you, Jewel.”
Jewel nodded and brushed a tear away with the back of her hand.
“I will never abandon you—remember that? I promised you that the day I took you as my bride. I will never leave you. I will never forsake you. If I have to go away, it is only for a little while, and I will come back again. But while I am away, you must come to this room and liberally take from it. Use these gifts, Jewel. Use the things I have left you to do the job I have for you.”
“I don’t understand,” Jewel sputtered. “What job?” She had longed for a job in the prince’s kingdom, but now, now that he was leaving, she did not feel adequate to do anything but sob.
“You have the most important job of all.”
Jewel’s eyes widened with fear.
“It is such an important job, I have given it to every person in my kingdom: I want you to be like me.”
It didn’t sound very much like a job, and Jewel couldn’t help but feel she was missing something.
“You are my bride, Jewel. That means everything you say and everything you do reflects back on me. You are my representative, don’t you see? It is your job to show the people who I am when I am not here to show them myself. It is your job to serve and care for them, to love and instruct them, and to uphold all the rules of my kingdom as if I were doing it myself.”
Now she understood. It was a very big job indeed.
“How can I do that? I’ve only just come to know you myself!”
“You have to trust me. I would not give you a job I have not equipped you to do.”
“But I don’t even know all the rules of your kingdom! What if I mess it up?”
“Oh, you will mess it up. Over and over again, you will mess it up.”
“Then what?” Jewel felt panic rising inside.
“Then I will forgive you.”
“But what if I need you?”
“Then I will come running. Do you not think I would move heaven and earth to come to my bride if she called?”
“But…” she did not know what else to say, except that she was scared.
“But…? But I have given you everything you need to grow into your role. I have given you everything you need to thrive in my kingdom. There is only one thing left. Do you trust me, Jewel?”
“Yes. No! I don’t know.” She put her head in her hands and cried, “Only, help me!”
“I will,” he said, cradling her in his arms. “I have one more thing to show you, Jewel, and it is a good thing. Think of all you have seen and all I have given you, and know this: I have saved the very best for last.”