This English-lovin’ Dickinsin-obsessed lady loves beautiful words and so it pains me to write the above title.
It’s like fingernails down a chalkboard to write “don’t it?” but truthfully, I have Tina and Ike’s song “Every Picture Tells A Story, Don’t It?” running through my head at the moment.
I have been reading a book by a writer I have recently discovered and I find myself nodding at least at every other page. Shauna Niequist’s book Cold Tangerines is a book of short vignette’s of her life and as I read each one, I find myself highlighting pretty much the entire book.
And yes, I nod. The nodding, in my humble opinion, is how we know we are reading a good writer.
She writes about loss. She laments over the curse of writing. But what I read last night it precisely the number one reason I share my life like an open book – good will inevitably come from the crown of ashes that has been replaced by a crown of beauty.
And as I look back at the road I’ve traveled I realize that it’s not MY story – it’s HIS story.
I’m merely the vessel to glorify Him.
These words, these brilliant words, are what I read last night:
Every life tells a story, through words and actions and choices, through our home and our children, through our clothes and dishes and perfume. We each play a character in a grand drama, and every stage direction matters. We tell our stories, and we let God’s story be told through our stories. We hide and we seek, and we lose ourselves in the best possible way, and find things around us and insides ourselves that we never expected. We tell God’s story as we live and discover our own. We know that God is a storyteller. Hes’ a mad scientist and a father and a magician, and certainly, he’s a storyteller. And I don’t know if there’s anything better in the world than when we lay ourselves wide open and let his story become our story, when we screw up our fists and our courage and start to tell the truest, best stories we know, which are always’ God’s stories.
-Shauna Niequist, Cold Tangerines (Hide and Seek)
Not long ago, I met a person who made a passing comment about how open I am with you all on my blog. She made a comment that indicated that she thought perhaps I shouldn’t reveal as much as I do.
And though I feel strongly that we should all be real about Jesus’ hand in our lives, there is still the human side of me that hears what I perceive to be criticism and I begin to wonder. So since then, I’ve been examining why I do share so much and I came to this – I share what I share so honestly because this story is His story and it’s really beautiful.
Every last detail.
I don’t really want to leave anything out.
On this Multitude Monday, I thank God for…
381. The story that I thought was mine but is really His
382. His way with words, with a beauty that’s beyond my comprehension
383. How the plot thickens and resolves then thickens and resolves
384. The story that is still in progress
385. The mysterious ending
386. The trust His story encourages within me
387. His story that I read in others
388. The story I see beginning to be told in my children
389. His hand that it literally every place in the linear time line of my existence
390. The Table of Contents He reveals in our outer shell but then makes the real “meat” of a chapter come through when we decide to tell it
This week may you pray over your story. May you see His hand in every angle. May you trust and love and marvel and what the next chapter just may be.