The Princess talked to the King about Ishmael. It was a go nowhere romance. She looked at the King with tears in her eyes. “I hate this. I cannot have him by my side, for he is married to another, and not from this Kingdom.
He belongs to that terrible prophet who cared nothing for women and had all those wives, the youngest of who was only nine. You had no one, for you gave yourself for us, to save us. If only he could see the difference between you.”
She felt she had been put in Ishmael’s life to be a friend, and a witness for the King and the Kingdom. Everything she could do for him, she had done – but instead of wanting the King, he had turned around and wanted her.
She should dismiss him as a liar and an unfaithful person and walk away without a backward glance. If she took that road, she would shrug him off and walk away – but she would hate and despise the memory of him.
He had been her friend. She did not want to go there. If she could not hate him then the only other choice was to feel something for him. It reminded her of the affair that Silver-tongue had lied and manipulated her into. She gritted her teeth. Why did he have to act like that? She had been content the way she was.
She was sick of the emptiness, the loneliness, struggling through each day on her own, the unwanted advances from men, and the children being fatherless. There were no male relatives on her side, and the young Prince Justin had grown nearly as tall has her. Although she made sure her children spent as much time as they could with their father’s parents, her son needed someone while his father was not around.
There was this one thing she was glad of, the regard for her she had seen in Ishmael’s eyes. He esteemed her. In her heart she treasured it. Love was love, even if not from the right man.
At work she looked at Ishmael’s empty desk and although she missed him, she realised it was the King she wanted. He had to be number one. She called out to the King loudly and powerfully in her mind; “It is you I want, you. It’s got to be you! I choose you, not Ishmael.”
As soon as she could, she ran into the Kingdom, seeking the King. Finding Him in the desert, she bowed saying “Jesus, Lord. It is you I want, you I need, you I choose”.
The King drew near and spoke;
Therefore I am now going to allure you;
I will lead you into the desert
And speak tenderly to you.
There I will give her back your vineyards,
And will make the valley of Achor (trouble) a door of hope.
Then you will respond as in the days of your youth,
As in the day you came up out of Egypt.
“In that day”, declares the Lord,
You will call me ‘my husband’;
You will no longer call me ‘my master’.” Hosea 2:14-15
Soon after the day the Princess made the King first in her heart, she was sitting with her children in front of the fireplace, where they found two rings on the chair. One was a gold wedding band, the other a smaller ring with a diamond chip. Putting them away, she asked everyone who had ever visited the house if they had lost the rings. No-one came forward for them, and the gold band became hers. She kept the smaller diamond ring for her daughter to wear when she was older. It was a mystery where the rings had come from. She held the gold band it in her hand and studied it. It fitted her third finger perfectly.
She spoke to the King. “Lord, this jewellery is a puzzle to us, for the rings seem have appeared out of nowhere. Did you give these rings to us?”
The King nodded, saying “Now we are on the same page, read further.” She read the next lines of Hosea.
I will betroth you to Me forever;
Yes, I will betroth you to Me
In righteousness and justice,
In loving kindness and mercy;
I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness,
And you shall know the Lord. Hosea 2:19