Sharing the Laughter and the Memories
I love gatherings with family and friends. Laughter that fills the room. Memories retold again and again. New faces, new loves, new challenges, new hopes and dreams. You, too?
When we get together, our family shares story after story after story. And invariably, my sons Kyle and Kevin will remind me at some point that I’ve already told a particular story: “More than once, Mom.” Had that moment?
And then there are those get-togethers with college roommates. We’ll spend hours remembering the past, catching up on the present. The five of us will fondly retell our stories, some we’ll remember like it was yesterday, others that are getting harder to recall, and still others that vary with each retelling, depending on who’s doing the retelling.
One summer I began putting some thoughts down on paper. I wanted my sons to know how I met their father. I wanted them to know how God had taken misguided priorities and misdirected intentions and turned them into beautiful marriage, a wonderful life. While I was at it, I expected to share a few other lessons from life. It’s what a mother does, right?
Mind you, Kyle and Kevin had not asked for this. At 26 and 24, neither boy felt he needed one more life lesson from Mom, but I decided for them! It’s what a mother does, right?
God’s Bigger Purpose
As I started writing, I knew before the end of the first chapter that the book was not going to be about me. I knew it was very much a story about God’s love and faithfulness, an opportunity to see the fruit of His Holy Spirit in my life. More important, it was the chance to see a bigger, more important purpose, something I’ve often overlooked.
I’m older than some of you, younger than others. I’m at that special age when I’ve become achingly aware of all that I don’t know, of memories that are staring to fade. Life had slowed enough to permit me the time to look back with a profound awareness at God’s incredible place in my life. Doing so, I got to reframe life in God’s grace. I got to share story after story of God’s love and faithfulness. Both heartwarming and gringe-worthy recollections showed how the Spirit of God has become love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control in my life. He’s been there for you, too.
Ordinary People ~ Extraordinary Service
As you know, our faith includes the most amazing collection of stories. The Bible’s 66 books tell of patriarchs and prophets, kings and queens, disciples and apostles, all ordinary people called into extraordinary service.
The media would have you believe that unless you’re a celebrity getting out of rehab, you have nothing worth telling. You and I know differently. We each have an incredible story. We each have chapter after chapter filled with God’s love and faithfulness.
Yes, each one of us has been called to a special place in God’s family. Our family stories may be very different, but they’re all equally remarkable, equally worth sharing. Some of us will have opportunities to write our stories; some will speak of them. Some will open their home and host the gathering. All will be blessed—those telling and those delighting in their retelling!
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Before my father died, he reminded me that Mom had asked me to write a book. At the time the boys were in college, and the notion of writing was unfathomable. Writers write books. By the time my boys were adults, I’d run out of excuses. I was also at that age when I could pause and reflect.
Fruit of My Spirit: Reframing Life in God’s Grace was my first publishing endeavor. My second was Signs in Life: Finding Direction in Our Travels with God. Both are collections of stories that tell of God’s love and faithfulness. Both tell of His remarkable grace and mercy.
When not writing, I serve as the Client Service Coordinator for The Planner’s Edge, an investment advisory firm in Washington state. I’m active in my church, serving on the Leadership Team and gathering with a wonderful group of ladies to study and giggle over lattes and chocolate. On my desk is a rock with the words “Choose Joy!” etched in it. It’s my inspiration for each day. As an author, it is my hope that my own words might share that joy we find together as children of God.
With Him, it can be so.
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