Why I Wear a Toe Ring

I remember in 5th grade begging my mom to get my ears pierced.

Only one other girl in my class had hole-less lobes so I pleaded my case, “But Mooooooom! EVVVVV-ERYONE has their ears pierced but Heidi and me!”

My super-conservative mom told me if God wanted holes in my ears, I would have been born with them.

I retorted, “Well, if he wanted me to wear clothes, then I would have been born with them on too. So, tomorrow I am going to school nude.” :-)

Mom was bluffing. She took me to the Meijer Thrifty Acres grocery store on my birthday that year where a nice lady in the jewelry department pierced them for me.

The pain was worth the cool.

In college, my friend Carmen and her best friend each got one ear double pierced (cool for that time). They said it would be to remind them that they belonged to the Lord; that they were His slaves.

Exodus 21:5-6 says about slaves (who would be bound to work for 6 years and then could go free):

“But the slave may declare, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children. I don’t want to go free.’ If he does this, his master must present him before God.Then his master must take him to the door or doorpost and publicly pierce his ear with an awl. After that, the slave will serve his master for life.”

I loved Carmen’s idea. An earring to remind me I want to serve God and my family.

However, I am a wimp.  And the pain of the first go-round of ear piercing was enough for me!

In fact, I am so thankful I am not a missionary in a country where, if you don’t have your nose pierced, it means your husband beats you. Or, that I don’t have a hubby that thinks I could totally rock the cute-tiny-diamond-stud-nose-ring look.

If either of these were true, I would use a Barbie stick-on earring there instead!

Well, a few years ago, while speaking at a resort on St. Simon’s Island, GA, a group of us from the retreat went shopping downtown on our free time. There, we each bought sterling silver toe rings.

I wear it to remind myself that I am a voluntary slave of Christ. And that I love my Master and my husband and children.

About my toe ring... at KarenEhman.com

When I see it, I am able to realign my thoughts at those times I want to put myself on the throne. Or, when I grow weary of the serving, and running, and working that is required to be a Christian wife and mom.

I have become so concerned with the many women I meet (and some I know in real life) who have decided the grass is greener on the other side. So, they chuck their families (and sometimes God too!) and venture off to finally “Be happy.”

Now, I am not one who will just sit and wag my finger at them thinking “For shame, you sinner!” God has gently chided me when I have done that in the past saying, “Karen, that could be you someday, you know. Be careful. And prayerful”

Marriage and mothering the way God commands is hard work! It takes patience, time, tears and forgiveness. It requires that we regroup and restart—-sometimes over and over again.

But my toe ring reminds me that this is for life. I am a slave of Jesus and a willing servant of my family. (And it is not a one-way street. They love and serve me too.)

Yes, I am free to do as I’d like. There are no laws in my country against chucking my family and running away. (Come one….you know we moms sometimes dream of running away!)

However, my toe ring reminds me of this:

“Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves.” 1 Peter 2:16

Will you sign up to be His slave?


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  1. Karen, do you wear a fitted/sized toe ring? Not an adjustable. Solid ring represents eternity, as the wedding ring does. Fits snug, so it will not come off. What style of ring do you wear, and when did you first put it in? It is okay to wear more then one. A fitted/sized ring on your big toes as well. On your forth toe, left foot, would be a wedding toe ring. Do you share/post any pictures? Thank you.

  2. I looked up the meaning of a toe ring and found your site, I had a dream someone stole my crown/head piece it was beautiful and had gold gems and a pearl. Not only that they stole this beautiful gold toe ring with what looked like diamonds. I felt it was spiritual and wanted to know the mean.
    When I read why you wore one it tucked at my heart, I feel beaten everyday I’m divorced raising two teenagers on my own and feel so beaten at every turn. I know God is good and gas plans that I know nothing of. But I thank you for what you wrote I truly appreciate it. Cheers Malarma

  3. Love the idea! Thanks for sharing! …and to the “ProudAtheist” when God reveals Himself to you, I pray that you have the courage to accept the truth and the willingness to come back and share with us just how He did it. His love, divine understanding and revelation be with you.

  4. Dear karen, this is wonderful , am so pleased to read this, I am a lover of rings entirely but each time I want to put on a toe ring, something tells me I need a strong reason to put a ring on my toe, reading this has given me a strong reason and a defence for wearing a toe ring not just for fashion but for that reason in which christ is involved. Thank you for this.

  5. Hi Karen,

    Thanks for sharing. I too wear a toe ring on n off but really like ur insight on this. I recently put an end to a 6 years relationship that I was trapped in. My family and my church family are very pleased. I took this decision after a lot of prayers and as a step of obedience toward God. With the help of, you can say my support group my friend who is a youth pastors wife :) I prayed for the soul tie to be broken, she also mentioned that I could wear a ring as a sign of Jesus’s love for me n me Him, making Him my all in all and submit myself to Him n trust in Him to find the right man He will’s me to be with.

    I’m really happy to have visited your site. My prayer everyday is for God to make me the woman of Proverbs 31 and for God to bless me with a man of Psalms 1 :)
    I had intended to get married on 12.12.12 and so tomorrow is the day I would be wearing my ring on my left ring finger as my dedication to my Lord n Saviour Jesus. He will forever remain the Lover of my soul!!

    Bless you and love you with the love of Christ,


  6. Hi Karen.
    Here’s a little story for you.
    i’m a male and i wear 2 toe rings.Why????. i’m not homosexual.
    my girl friend has deformed toes,and has always been ashamed of her feet.I actually find them bueatiful.I actually convinced her to start wearing flip-flops:).but she thought that people were staring at her toes.So i put on a toe ring.i would rather have someone look at me and wonder ,then her feel uncomfortable about herself.
    I know wear 2 toe rings. 24/7.and am comfortable about it.In front of her and my folks.Still not so much infront of some people.(fellow employees)male)
    Iam a christian,but never thought of this a commitment to christ,just to my love of a girl
    is it one in the same

  7. I was five too when I sat on the high stool at Roses to get my ears pierced. I also remember my Mom buying me an orange necklace that day because I did so well. In college, I got my cart ledge and my belly button pierced (I know “TMI,” and both places only have scars to prove that something was there). As an African-American, the first Scripture you used is what I was taught as to why African-American males were not to wear earrings because it was a sign of slavery. I had never looked at jewelry as a way to be a slave for our Savior. I’m being transformed by the renewing of my mind. Thank you for sharing this revelation, and I look forward to hearing more from you at the She Speaks Conference.

  8. Karen, thanks for sharing! I have two sets of ear piercings and although the first set went swimmingly, the second set was painful for over a year! If I had known that, I would never have had them done! I don’t often wear more than one pair of earrings, but I did one day recently and was suprized the find that the second holes had not closed up. I have never had a toe ring, and I am too much a chicken (as well as too conservative) to get a tatoo. I love the idea that something so simple can be a reminder of the high price that was paid for my salvation! I would love to be a recipient of your largess! Blessings to you and your ministry!

  9. Karen, this idea is COOL! A physical reminder that I am a slave to the Lord and he is doing a huge work in me…

  10. I was a wimp and mom bribed me with hot chocolate to get my 2nd ear pierced after I went home with only one done. I was 3 but chocolate is still a weakness.

  11. Thanks for posting this. I love the idea of wearing a toe ring for this purpose. It would be nice to look for a toe ring next time I shop. I will definitely share this page with my bestfriend and go shopping with her. :)

  12. Love it!!!

    I wear 2 rings on my right hand: my wedding ring to my husband in it’s customary place, and one on my index finger that says “Jesus”. Like I tell people, “One because I am married to Gerry, the other is because I am married to my Lord”.

    That’s what the Bible says!

    …….and my friends always tease me that I take things “too literal”~

  13. I LOVE this idea and reminder. I think I may need to go out and get myself a toe ring. I was inspired by you several years ago at the HAH conference. I have gone to all of your sessions and then one year you showed up skinny! I loved your testimony and this year have started my journey. To date I have lost 104 pounds and feel great! Thanks for all of your inspiration!

  14. Thank you for your inspiring post. I too have my ears pierced and have worn a toe ring before but have never given thought to any symbolism there might be with wearing my toe ring or other forms of jewelry. The only jewelry that I have worn that was symbolic for me is my wedding ring and my cross necklace. After reading your post I was reminded of Colossians 3:17 “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Thanks for the encouragement and for reminding us that all parts of our life should be shared with God, even our toe ring….no part of our life is separate from God since He is everywhere. Thanks Karen!

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