The Jade Bracelet
There is a favorite cartoon of mine that depicts a funny scene developing at a psychiatrist’s office. A sparrow lies on the couch and the doctor asks what brings him in. The wide-eyed little bird tells him, “I feel like someone always has their eye on me!” If this makes you laugh, then you understand the reference. God chose this unassuming little bird to depict His care for us and demonstrate our value. I used to think God was more apt to pay attention to the bigger aspects of life, but a miraculous incident occurred in 2007, that shifted my attention away from this idea. Forget the quip “the devil is in the details” …. God has been intimately involved all along. The following story is true and goes to show you that sometimes God lets us win over dastardly, marauding pirates!
“We’ve been robbed!” As my husband started relaying over the cell phone all that had been taken, I grew increasingly annoyed. Making my way back home to encounter the terrible mess and speak with police, it suddenly occurred to me -- my jade bracelet was gone! My eyes welled up with tears at the thought of it. Although I had valuable and memorable items in my jewelry box, nothing was as precious as this one jade bracelet. Not only because it symbolized one of the most important blessings God gave us in of our lives, but it was a witness to it as well. Five years earlier, in a jewelry store in Hong Kong, it had caught my eye. A tennis bracelet with stones of bright green jade intermixed with bows of diamonds and cast in gold. Mesmerized, I had never seen anything like it. At that time, my husband was not one to buy me expensive jewelry and the price tag confirmed that it was not to be. Still, I felt bound to it because of the timing, where we were and what it potentially symbolized. We were in Hong Kong just 24 hours away from adopting our baby girl from a Southern province in China. After a long three-year wait, our adoption agency had sent us first news of her only the month before. “Congratulations!” they said, “Her name is Fu Yu Qing which translates to mean 'blessings of precious jade.'”
Twirling the bracelet around my wrist one last time I cannot recall the words my husband used because my head was spinning. The bracelet would be his gift to me as a legacy for our daughter. As I boarded the tour bus with a thankful heart, I marveled at it and became lost in the sweet anticipation of the day to come. I could not have ever imagined that God would send us on this humble journey to adopt a little girl clear across the world. I thought of our boys back home who were 7 and 8 at the time. I chuckled at the notion that I once believed they were the last children I would raise. Clearly, God had a different future in store and for that I would be eternally grateful. The next day we were one of eleven families to excitedly enter a government building in Guangzhou. One by one we were called up and presented with our precious little ones. As Anna Jade was placed in our arms, we knew that God’s calling was finally complete and that her future was assured as part of our forever family.
As I surveyed the damage and cleaned up the mess from the break in, I sought comfort by telling myself it was only “things.” Lamenting to friends about my disappointment, one had the audacity to propose a very far fetched idea. “You should go on eBay and do a search for that bracelet,” she said, “you never know.” A week later I sat at a computer remembering those words. Half halfheartedly I typed “jade and diamond bracelet” into the eBay search engine not really expecting to find anything. And yet...there it was! The seller was but a few miles from my house. The many close up pictures he displayed confirmed its uniqueness, and more importantly the jewelry store in Hong Kong where it was fabricated and purchased confirmed that the insignia stamped on its clasp was authentic! With four hours left to bid I placed an urgent call to my brother in law, who is a police officer, as well as the local detectives. On their direction I entered the bidding and nervously saw the bracelet escalate several hundred dollars. An exasperating bidding war ensued and at its end I held my breath in anticipation for the outcome. “You are the winning bidder!” the screen read. I could scarcely believe my eyes. I had just witnessed something unfathomable!
Receiving it over a week later, the detectives were the first to open the package. Reports and pictures were taken, fingerprints were dusted, and the bracelet taken for appraisal. The Hong Kong jewelry store again confirmed that their name was stamped on the clasp, and I waited triumphantly for justice to take its course. In the end, however, the case was transferred to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement “pending further investigation” -- still pending over ten years later. Perhaps one day I’ll see justice, or perhaps not. Yet, the miraculous story of how this bracelet found me a second time shows me the tender character of God. What started out as a beautiful memento to His calling became more a reminder of how God is even in the smallest details. He did something big to show us His grace at work in the seemingly small. More than the return of diamonds and precious stones or the symbolic significance of the bracelet is the rediscovery of the true treasure. The legacy that, whatever challenges and heartbreaks we face, God is in the details and always faithful.