On friday’s, we write for five short minutes without editing and gussying the page. We spill what rises to the surface and share it, bravely with others, and we encourage. We give virtual high fives and hugs and pats on the back, sometimes, we gather in prayer too, for the broken stories, the wounded stories that sneak out when we weren’t expecting. This is Five Minute Friday, this is how we roll.
The discarded toys in the yard have a story. A once upon a time I was a favorite kind of story, a once upon a time, I was new and unbroken story.
But things have changed. Time and rain and dirt have rubbed the shine off, and the patina of love looks more like rust and grime.
The cars with their split axles, no longer roll right. Their tires flop through the grass, lopsided, lumpy.
And maybe I feel a bit for them because my story feels a bit broken down too. Creeping into a middle aged season, I’m no longer shiny and new.
I’ve grown a patina of my own, a seasoning of life experiences that have shaped and turned my story inside out from the one I imagined as a child.
It’s not a bad thing, just different, and finding ways to reconcile the differences between expectations and reality can be a challenge, particularly in the rainy seasons, when the mud gathers around my ankles.
Your story maybe looks like mine. But then again, maybe not. Maybe we share moments and memories, but that’s where it ends. We diverge over beliefs and opinions, maybe it’s theology or politics of faith that knot us up–
I don’t know what I thought I knew and so my story changes again. And again.
Words come and go, they drift in and pile up in the corner of my mind, waiting to be untangled and strung out.
I look out at the junk in the yard again. The discarded once-upon-a-time treasured toys, now abandoned and doomed for the trash can.
And I wonder, where will my own story land? And will I be brave enough, honest enough to tell it.
Some days I am certain–yes. On other days, it’s grimy bits deter me from the wide open sharing.
But whether or not I tell you my story, and even if you never tell me yours, I remember God knows. He knows because He’s writing it now. He’s written it already. Somewhere between space and time in the black holes of the universe He has already formed us, in the dirt and mud, He has raised us up and raises us still–
I say this to you, (and maybe mostly to me), tell your story.
Start in the middle. Start in the beginning. Circle around it and hold it out to someone.
Bend with me here, in the defunct garden of broken down toys and no-longer-shiny, and lets put our hands in the dirt and say what it is that has brought us to this moment.
Our stories might be more alike than we think–
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