Some days, you want to tuck the words away in more than one place – so you’ll be able to find them when your heart is forgetful. These words are those words. Yes, I’m tucking them away here, for me. But they’re for both of us – because we need to never forget what we are.
I have a little story to tell you today – or perhaps it’s more of a confession.
Two years ago, I sent out an Instagram love note to strangers, hoping someone would accept my invitation for a cup of coffee. No one did.
Two years ago, I wrapped my bold dreams in brightly colored ribbon and carried them like candy to share with anyone and everyone. I thought they would be loved – that I might be loved, too. No one noticed.
Two years ago, I walked boldly into a writers’ conference, believing I had a big story to tell. I walked out of that same conference, feeling small and inadequate and alone.
Two years ago, in my mind’s eye, I saw fields of flowers. Bright pink and purple and red everywhere, painting the landscape. I thought I could water them all.
Today, I have returned to that same place I was two years ago, and yet I am in a different place altogether. Rather than send out messages to strangers, I am having coffee with flesh-and-bone souls who have meandered into my world as the days have passed. There is no brightly colored ribbon this time – just a clinging cross, a place for words to be written, and a safe and loving space to call home at the end of the days. Oh, please know that the dreams are still there, and the story? Yes, it’s still big. But that story – and its scribe – have learned something over the past two years. We’ve learned that color without detail is beautiful but distant. It can’t be touched or felt. We’ve learned that there is beauty in going deep. And we’ve learned that the story lives on, regardless of how it’s shared – or if it’s shared at all. Because the good stories are the lives we live fully. Maybe those lives will be splashed like ink on pages for all to read. Or maybe those lives will simply be inscribed in the hearts of those who live that life with us. I believe now that, no matter what the future holds with our stories, inscribed hearts are where true legacy lies.
Two years ago, I saw fields of flowers. Today, I am overwhelmed by the finely detailed beauty of a garden.
If you need an ear to listen to your story, mine would love to listen. If you today are feeling small and inadequate and alone, know that I feel your heart and am praying right now. If you have dreams, know that they are like flowers. And they will bring beauty and life to others – because YOU bring beauty and life to others. You are the best story. Don’t forget that.