Our regional writers group had a booth this past weekend at the Gold Country Fair in Auburn, California. It was an engaging time, as fifteen of us took shifts talking with people about reading and writing and inviting them to join us and to buy our books.
What surprised me most was how involved members of the public got while putting together a group story! Despite our visitors’ murmured statements that “I’m no writer,” they eagerly joined in to add a line to the previous sentence written by someone else. The final result each day was creative and humorous, taking the plot to unexpected mysteries or fantasies. Each day’s tale began with a different lead line and ended with a wild conclusion several newsprint sheets later.
Each one of us has a unique story of who we are, where we come from, and where we hope we are going. Some people research their genealogies; others interview their relatives or plumb their own depths of insight. For people of faith, our personal stories begin with God, and wind through some wild adventures of failure and faithfulness, surprises and the seemingly mundane – all to end up in a place we could not have guessed. Filled with God’s love and forgiveness despite all to the contrary, each of our stories is still being written.
We are stewards of this story, which ultimately turns out to be the Story: the Good News of God’s grace and mercy in Jesus Christ. We are “stewards” of our own lifelong encounter with God, not in the sense of managing or controlling it, but rather in taking good care of what God has done with, to, and for us. And part of our stewardship of it is sharing our story: letting people know the surprising tale of what God has done in our lives, including the lines yet to be written.
May you be a faithful, enthusiastic steward of your story!
See also: Stewards of Our Stories