April showers bring May flowers, at least that’s how it used to work. Around here the weather patterns seem to have shifted a bit since I was a young girl. This year we had an April snow shower that brought more snow than we saw all winter. A week later the April sunshine pushed the thermometer well past 80 degrees.
But even with the crazy weather patterns, the day still came in early May when I just knew spring was here to stay.
I walked outside and the grass below my bare feet felt like familiar carpeting.
Yes, the winter had passed and spring was here.
For a little while.
In the same way the familiar feel of cool, soft grass tells me spring has come, God uses words, arranged in just the right way and discovered at just the right time, to notify me that a new season has arrived.
We’re done with that now, He seems to say. Come, follow Me this way.
The early spring flowers have all pushed up through the earth by now. Around here we’re working on poppies and peonies.
Like our shifting seasons in Ohio, God strings together seasons in life to move us closer to Jesus, if we allow Him to.
For me, it often starts with a sentence or phrase striking a chord deep within me when I first encounter it, then staying with me long past the moment. The words come most often when I’m reading, but also when I’m listening to someone sing or see a beautiful piece of art.
Recently I came across the line “live the story you want to tell.” It was printed on a proposed piece of marketing collateral at work.
Now, weeks later, I hear God saying, Come, follow Me this way. I find myself pondering the phrase and its implications. What would it look like to live the story I want to tell?
How would I handle situations differently if I were the main character of that story?
How would I interact with my five-year old at the end of a long day? My husband? That stranger? How would I spend my rare free time? Scrolling Facebook? Calling friends?
My mind turns to Gran, a master storyteller who lived 101 years on this planet. I grew up hearing all the stories of her childhood and early adulthood, and they were filled with grand adventure. She could tell the same story a hundred times, and it never got old to me.
I sat beside her as she slept during her final days. The hospice nurse sat quietly on the other side of the room. I watched her breathing, all the while knowing she wasn’t likely to wake again.
What I learned that day is that life goes so fast. Even if it lasts 100 years.
Yet each morning is a chance to be the main character I’d write for my life. A chance at new life, to allow the old to pass. To put aside gossip and pride and all sorts of sins. To view myself as I truly am. Made holy by the blood of Jesus.
Each day I get to make the choice to walk in strength and dignity like the princess I am becoming.
So, here’s how I’m trying to live my one, short story:
As one who is forgiven, because I am.
As one who is deeply loved, because I am.
As one called to love others, because I am.
I am, because God does. He forgives. He loves. He calls. Turns out, He’s the main character of my story. And He is the master storyteller.
May my life magnify Jesus Christ as Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Because that is the only story worth telling.