It is on my heart to share a piece of what I shared with our youth a few weeks ago at retreat. The theme of the trip was "Restored" - if only those kids knew how much He restored me on their "youth" retreat.
I knew that many of them didn't know me very well. I figured they just saw me as a mom who was there all the time, taking up their money for retreat on Wednesday nights. So as I prayed and prepared for the few moments that I would have the opportunity to pour into their lives, this is what kept dropping in my spirit: I didn't just want them to know my story, but to know my "re-story".
I could sit here and pour all of my past onto this computer screen, opening up every closet that holds keys to the personality makeup I have today. I could sit here and type for hours the hurts and sins of who I was. But I'm not going to, because my story cannot help anyone. However, telling you about when I placed the pen in the Lord's hand - that can bring hope. Sharing Christ with another is not as much about your story as it is about your "re-story."
Were you given another chance at life? Were you given a mulligan, a re-do...a new start? Tell someone! Did the Lord allow you to turn the page, giving Him the rights to the new story? Tell someone! They may not know your past, but they need to know that the past doesn't have to define them. They need to know that the story can change. They need to know that there is hope for a different path.
My past on its own can do nothing but make me look good or bad (depending on what section of years), but my past combined with His future plans can do so much to turn the focus off of me onto the One who changed me.
I dare you to not just tell someone that there is hope for a new life...open up who you are, and show them that there is hope for a new life. Show them where the story changed. Point out to them how you turned over the pen to the Lord. If you haven't fully let go of the pen and pages, I encourage you to trust the Author and Finisher of our faith with your heart.
Your story may not seem a best-seller to you, but your re-story can change someone's life. They are reading...give them hope for a happy ending.
Father, I want You to continue writing this story. I trust You with every sentence, paragraph and chapter. Help me to not only share my story with others, but the re-story. I want people to know that You can change every life that is surrendered to You. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
2 Corinthians 5:17