Stories

Barbara Rainey products

Lunch with a new friend this week opened up the pages of a storybook full of twists and turns and challenges and miracles that left me wanting more.  We were grateful to be sitting outside enjoying gorgeous fall weather.  While we ate our salads I asked a few questions and was introduced to the chapter titles of her life with a few themes thrown in for hints of color.  Good stories are like that, interesting, challenging and engaging.  It’s hard to stop reading a really good book!

Two years ago my new friend and her family moved to our town.  Our different ages, stages of family, neighborhoods, and the pace of life, kept us from a real conversation, though we had met shortly after their move and saw one another from time to time at work related events.

Though I suppose it might sound overly dramatic I’m realizing life is like living in a library for every person’s life is an unfinished biography.  Surrounded by living books the Author of life is always writing pages of wonder in those we pass by, most of whose stories we will never know.  But if we had eyes to see we would be in awe.  One of my favorite books says it this way:  “It would be an intolerable burden of glory if we all saw unveiled, the splendor of all other creatures, all the time.  We cannot bear very much reality.”

Even though this is true, that seeing such splendor would be too much, we must risk engaging with others to avoid the dullness of selfishness.  Being intentional isn’t easy for it always invites rejection, but when asking questions is met with honest replies we are honored with a paragraph of that person’s story.

So this fall I want to challenge everyone who reads this to use Untie Your Story with your family or your friends or your neighbors, or even at a holiday lunch party to listen to glimpses of others’ stories.  As Dennis and I have invited guests in our home to answer the Untie Your Story questions about gratitude, we have been amazed to learn we have faith heroes in our midst, walking miracles who shouldn’t be alive, those who have experienced profound love or redeeming grace; all whose stories enrich our lives.

Be intentional.  Take the risk with the storybooks around you.

I’m confident you will be glad you did, for a good story will keep your attention all the way to the end.

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