Welcome to my eclectic journey of my life and delights. This year my theme is surrendering my writing pen to the true author, Jesus Christ, while looking forward to the future, reflecting on the past and dancing through my journey.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

"Everyone Has a Story to Tell"

Spring break usually means a trip to Home School Nationals Basketball Tournament out of state...this year I get to have it at home!  This free time is so foreign to me that I looked around to see what all I could accomplish, while still taking time out to play.

I decided I would attack one of my frustrations, which is not having room for all my books.  I have now lived in this house for a year and half and still can't locate my wonderful resources.

I didn't have a bookshelf budget, but needed bookshelves, so my adventure to find some reasonable, yet decoratively pleasing bookcases, took me on an unexpected adventure.

I went to Craig's List and looked up bookshelves.  I found some that looked rustic and would add ambiance to our western-style playroom. 

My husband contacted the man...only two left. Oh well, I had wanted three, but two would work.

I started the hour drive to pick up my treasure and found myself taking half a day to hear someone else's story.

A beautiful, childless Christian couple, ex-pastor, in their early 50's and life had handed them some very hard blows.  They were starting over, selling all their possessions and figuring out how to make money.  All that had been accomplished in their material world of 20 years of marriage was gone.

The husband had been very resourceful with his resources and found old wooden fences to make the bookshelves to sell. 

As my husband visited with the man, I heard part of the story of their disappointments, failures, and the unforeseen pits that had brought them to this time in life.  Through all of her testimony, the wife still pointed to the Lord, even though I could tell the wounds were still very fresh. She smiled as if to let me know that she was going to make it.

I continued to nod, speak words of encouragement, exchange scripture,  because the walk she was still on was so familiar to my own.

The story was much the same, the years of marriage (10 years less than ours), but the same results.  Her strength, the same source, and her hurt was just as real.

As I got back into my car to take my new possessions home, I was glad I had stepped outside of my budget to make this purchase.  I prayed that what we had given them for the bookshelves would be multiplied and taken care of their need for the day.

I also thought about how each person has a story and everyone wants to be heard.  We all want to be known.  I wondered how many times I had missed taking the time to hear someone's story.  Maybe I was too busy or too worried about telling my own that I had missed being a listening ear.  Sometimes just being able to  tell someone it has been hard is healing to the wounds.

My spring break has brought me two new bookcases, more organization to my home, as well as, a very loud message.  I hope as I enter this spring, I will linger longer to hear someone's story, to give them a word of encouragement, a smile or a hug.  As the saying goes, "It isn't about Me!"

I Peter 1:6-9

My next spring plans...roller skating with all our children.  I will be on old fashion skates, the ones with the four wheels, while they will be blazing by me on their in-line skates...another time for gratitude.

3 Joining in with more words:

Martha Washington said...

I loved your story about the bookshelves! It is amazing how God brings people into our lives that help us to heal as we minister to them. The "realness" of this couples' testimony is evident and your empathy for them is sweet to hear and comforting to others. You write very well and I see God using this blog to comfort and inspire others. Love ya!

Appleseed Gifts said...

Great writing...just what I needed to read. See ya!

Appleseed Gifts

Debbie Petras said...

Oh Janette, we have even more in common. I love books. In our dream home, I had converted an entire large closet into bookshelves so there was plenty of space to hold all of my precious books. However, since moving into a very small rental there isn't much room.

I sold many of my books at a variety of places. I donated many to friends. I still have many in boxes in the garage. I found bookshelves in Walmart for $15! My husband and I put them together and now I have three bookshelves for my books.

So many of my books are treasures for me. They are underlined and dog eared and I just couldn't part with them all. They actually remind me of my spiritual growth. I can go back and see where I was and what I was learning. I journaled as I read my books.

I'm learning too to declutter and get rid of things that I really don't need. It is humbling and at times very difficult but I am also learning that it's just stuff.


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