Your Story Is Far from Over

We can trust the unknown of the future to the God we know is authoring its pages.

{my graphics are free goodies for you}

There’s this game I like to play and it never fails to catch people by surprise. Here’s how it works: I invite someone to grab coffee and once we’ve found a comfortable seat, our hands wrapped around a cup of something delicious, I look into their eyes and say these words: “So, what’s your story?”

Almost every time, they hesitantly respond, “My story? What do you mean, exactly?” I then offer to go first, to share with them the pages He has given me to live, and for the record, I don’t sugarcoat a single thing. By the time I finish, I can see the relief in their eyes, not because I have masterfully woven together life experiences into a beautiful story but because I’ve been honest, I’ve shown the mess of it all, and I’ve dared to say that the scars that remain are signs of His grace. My tests have truly become my testimony, my mess turning into my message.

After I finish the telling, I turn it over and ask again, “Will you tell me your story?” And this time, instead of uncertainty or panic, there is peace. You become a safe place when you share your story, both the broken and the beautiful, with another.

And so they begin and every time I’m in awe of the broken off pieces and the jagged scars from the hurting places, not because they’re messy but because His grace is enough for us all, running in and washing over, healing and mending, changing us and cleansing deep.

We’ve all walked roads that have battered and bruised, wounding us deep. We each carry scars. I used to hide mine, the one on my head from brain surgery and the ones on my heart from the times community walked right out. But not anymore. I’m learning that scars tell the stories of battles fought and won, of fears conquered and dreams chased, of mighty healing and of Jesus meeting us in the dry valleys.

Your scars tell your story and although you are more than your past, more than what you have experienced, gone through or done, every moment has been used to shape you into a new creation, redeemed and made whole, holy and blameless in the eyes of He who sees your scars and your burnt places, your struggles to join Him and walk on the water, as a page in a best-seller He is joyfully writing.

Too often we compare our beginning to someone else’s middle, our behind-the-scenes to someone else’s highlight reel. It’s easy to get caught up in comparing our painful places to someone else’s promised land, forgetting that we’re still journeying and we can trust the unknown of the future to the God we know is authoring its pages.

Every sentence He writes is written with the purpose of pointing people to the Friend who is always walking with us. We’re invited to live and tell our stories, giving Him all the glory. 2 Corinthians 5:16-17,20 says it this way:

We don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons!…God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he’s already a friend with you.

We have been given the task of telling everyone what God is up to in our lives. He has given us a story to live and it may have twists and turns, roads we would rather not walk and ampersands (in between seasons) we would prefer to hurry through to the other side, but He calls us to speak from those places and glorify Him on every page, daring to say He is beautiful and true, loving and kind, no matter what story the next page may tell.

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This blog post is an excerpt from my assistant Kaitlyn’s book, Even If Not: Living, Loving, and Learning in the in Between. I was honored and happy to offer this endorsement: “We live in a world where the story doesn’t always unfold the way we expected. In those moments we need to know we’re going to be okay. We need to know we can trust the Author. We need to know whatever happens we are not done yet. That is what Kaitlyn Bouchillon beautifully, honestly and powerfully offers our hearts in this book. When I got to the final page it didn’t feel like the end; it felt like a new chapter of hope in my life was ready to begin.”

If you’d like to connect with Kaitlyn, I’d suggest visiting her blog or following along on Instagram!

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Right now, we’re doing a special link-up series to celebrate Fiercehearted: Live Fully, Love Bravely. You’re a fiercehearted woman so I’m asking you to pour out a little love and courage with your words every Wednesday {the link-up goes live at 5:30am CST}. Simply write an encouraging blog post, especially if it’s about living fully and loving bravely, and then share it here. Don’t have a blog? You can still write an encouraging comment. If you’re reading this by email, go to holleygerth.com to see all the fun and join in too.

When you link up your post, take a moment to leave an encouraging comment on the one that’s linked up just before yours. Thanks, friends!

I’m having Coffee For Your Heart with my friend Holley Gerth!

{click to tweet that you’re joining me here today}

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About Holley

About Holley

Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author and Life Coach

I like humans, words, and good coffee. And I’d love to help you beat what’s holding you back, become all you’re created to be, and kick butt for the greater good.

Cheering you on,

Holley

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