It is funny how things work out in life. Some people may call them coincidence, some people say that they are unrelated things and our brains trying to make sense of the world tries to connect them, I say that they are little gifts from God–notes written on scraps of paper telling us he love us. These things I am talking about are those times in life when ideas converge or items in your life build on each other or balance each other out. Have you ever noticed how at churches people will be dealing with similar spiritual questions all at the same time. Have you ever noticed that sometimes when you need a smile or a reminder that life is good something will come just when it is needed most.
Today was one of those days for me. It was one of those days that reminds me that not only am I a child of God, but that he loves me–not just in the he loves the whole world way, but He actually knows me and cares about me and thinks about me. It is actually a multiple part reminder, so here’s the story.
Yesterday I got a rejection letter. It is part of being a writer I know and just a few days before I was checking the mailbox saying “I would rather be rejected than have to wait.” Turns out that wasn’t true. I’m not devastated or anything, just a little bummed. So tonight I check my email and it is a from someone who wants to buy something from Nailscars.com and put it in print. It isn’t like it was a huge deal, but it was God’s small way of reminding me that he still cares.
Part two is a little more ephemeral of a connection, but I feel it all the same. I am talking about telling your own personal story tomorrow night with the youth. I have an idea in my head and a rough outline, but even now I am a little shy of exactly what I want to say. Well, tonight Meredith and I watch “Definitely, Maybe” which is all about someone telling the story of their life. I found myself being drawn into this fictional account and was just reminded again about how much we are people of stories.
In this movie you have a story of a dad telling his daughter about his own love story and in doing so it invited her into a whole new aspect of his life. The sharing of his story led them to a new level of intimacy, because stories connect us, they bind us together. That is why telling your story is much more important than knowing a slick way to present the gospel. The gospel is powerful truth all on its own. It doesn’t need a marketing plan. Combine the truth of the gospel with the story of God in your life and you have all that you need to tell the world about Jesus.
But now I am writing my message instead of this entry. One of the things that I came away from in this movie is how much I would love to hear my parents tell their love story. I know parts and there are people I can go to and ask for other parts, but I don’t know it all.
If you are a parent out there let me ask you, “Do your children know your faith story?” Do they know how you met with God? Do they know how you walked with him in hard times? Do they know about the small times when God makes himself real to you? If they don’t make a plan to tell them right now. If they are too young then spend some time and write it down. You will feel better for it and you never know maybe one day when they are old and you are gone they will be able to look back and feel connected to you because of your story.
Cause that’s what stories do.