Thursday, May 15, 2014

My Story, Your Story

Captivating, a page-turner, tears, the aha moment—the keys of a good story.

Seventy percent of Scripture is story. Listening to author and speaker Dan Allender a few years ago, my thoughts were challenged by his insight, There are far more stories about death than resurrection. And if God is good, will I suffer through these stories? 

There must be something about my faith growing through engagement with story. I want my faith to grow.

Henri Nouwen suggests, “When I listen, I listen not only to a story, but also with a story.” (A Spirituality of Caregiving, page 36) I hear your story through the lens of my story.

Sitting in church last Sunday, I followed as the pastor read, “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” John 12:27, 28a

Jesus’ words, my soul is troubled. I can’t imagine. My soul aches; it is agonizing! Jesus knew the future as he rode into Jerusalem—his hard future. He also knew truth—for this purpose I have come. His motivation and his purpose clear; he did not waver. That week was part of his story; it is part of my story.

Beyond his death on the cross, beyond paying for my sins, beyond Jesus’ story, I thought about my story. 

I lifted Jesus’ words and reviewed my now, my story.

Starting eleven months ago, the unexpected, the hard entered and formed a framework we never
Our neighbor's home in flames.
anticipated. The Black Forest Fire, our subsequent evacuation, and our new reality started a year we won’t soon forget.

On the heels of the fire, Bill’s pain began—a severely herniated disc leading to surgery and an extremely painful, long recovery. Not what we expected; we are still in the midst.
Lexie sympathizing with Bill.

My soul hurts; hurts for my husband; hurts because of dashed expectations. And there is a bit of fear.

“And what shall I say?” Jesus’ question and my question too.

“Save me from this hour?” In my flesh, this is my plea. It entered Jesus’ thoughts too. But no. Jesus knew his purpose; he knew his desire. 

There is purpose in our hard. We may not know what it is, but we believe—there is purpose in our now. 

And as Jesus said, we echo… “Father, glorify your name.”

What story are you living now? How has hearing Jesus’ story (or my story) impacted your story? How can I pray for you in the midst of your story? Please let me know. I would be honored to walk with you.

“As long as we have stories to tell to each other there is hope.” Henri Nouwen, (The Living Reminder)

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good…”                                                   Genesis 50:20

PS - Echoes tells my stories and how God met me (or is meeting me) in these stories. My prayer is that as you read Echoes, you will consider your story and how God is speaking in it. The words recorded in Colossians 1:25 are the words I pray for you as you read Echoes of Grace. Bless you, my friend.


  1. I too want to say take my psin and loss away. There have been do msny terriblr things. But God has provided each snd everytime. We seemed to be the family wiyh s black cloud over us. But, In addition to my Lord, I had my husband & adopted daughter,Kaylee to lean on & to be strong for. NOW THEY ARE GONE! LORD WHY DID CRAIG DIE ? WHY DID KAYLEE HAVE TO LEAVE ? I feel so alone. I am trying to keep my eyes on God. Waiting for His timing.

    1. Sooooo hard, Tania. I prayed for you today.

  2. Mine is the pain of not reflecting God's love and provision of all I need for life and godliness. How can I continue to fill my voids with food and not Him? I KNOW He can---but I won't/don't. That isn't the heritage I want to leave. Thanks for writing.

    1. Thank you Carrie for you vulnerability. I am praying for you this morning.