In my defining moments, there is one that goes untold. It is not that I have forgotten. I remember. The challenge is that I rarely have anyone to share the moment with that will fully understand and appreciate. It is not that I think less of anyone that shares my journey. Sadly, the defining moments in my life were shaped by my experience. I am sadly short on the details that went into the stories that shaped the moment.
Twice, in very different contexts, I asked my Uncle Tom to come and preach. In each situation he told a children story that was the anchor of the remarks that followed. He effortlessly and seamlessly integrated the two into one. Inevitably his story centered on two basic themes. First, the Divine force in our lives was compassionately engaged in the details of our daily living. Second, we are all part of a bigger story.
From tigers taking care of little boys when they were in harm’s way, to driving through the darkness and danger to give others a chance, each story was a BIG one. In context of today, each seems mythological! It could not be, only it was. It was impossible, only it was real. It did not happen, yet I have met the characters in the story years, sometimes decades later.
The last time I listened to my Uncle share a story to a group of friends on lazy afternoon, I knew it would likely be my last. He spoke as if he was in another time and place. For me, I was there with him. Since then I have come to appreciate that each generation has stories that are unbelievable to the next. Whatever we do, it is important to remember. David’s advice still rings true; “Gaze long at her sloping bulwark, climb her citadel heights – then you can tell the next generation detail by detail the story of God,” (Psalm 48.3)
We still have time. We can take note. We can share our stories. God is alive in your life and mine.