lives are stories penned by the Master Author. Tales of adventure,
heartbreak, battles, hope, tragedy, love, and even the mundane moments
of the everyday end up as part of who we are: our stories.
Whether we’re a novella or a trilogy, our lives are tales of God’s work
in the epic narrative of His redemption.
Right now we’re works in
progress. I’d hazard to admit that most of us aren’t even close to
publishable yet. In our draft form our characterizations might be
underdeveloped. Our internal motivations are possibly too vague. Too
many extraneous words or scenes keep us from our purpose.
We need editing, possibly
revisions, but definitely a touch from the Master Craftsman.
And that’s exactly what we get.
After all, if anyone can make something out of nothing or who masters
in new creations, it’s God. As the Author of our souls, He takes
extreme care to create, write, edit, and polish the stories of our
lives in such a way that we glorify Him and inspire others.
From our beginnings, our infant
thoughts and actions are honed as effectively as our words to build
personalities. The influences of the people in our lives, the
situations, the joys and sorrows, and, yes, even those
character-building conflicts all weave a thread of purpose to develop
who we are. God loves us too much to allow chance or haphazard
circumstances to muddy His tale for our lives. He’s a Master Craftsman
who is not satisfied with mediocrity but knows the full potential of
his characters. So He bends over His proverbial notebook or computer,
painstakingly fashioning life-stories to the smallest detail.
The perfect Plotter, He peppers
each day, hour, and moment with gloriously planned opportunities to
deepen character development. Each chapter, scene, and word serve as
specific guides and shapers to help us battle the dragons, ride out the
storms, sprinkle mercy or love through the fracture of heartbreak. Not
one moment is wasted, because He knows the plans He has for us. “Your
eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in
your book before one of them came to be” (Ps. 139:16 NIV). If that’s
not an author statement, I don’t know what is.
As a draft, God carves away at
our imperfections: slicing at superfluous pride and selfishness,
changing our passive thoughts into purposeful actions, shaping a rhythm
of His grace into the pattern of our souls so that His love is apparent
on each page of our lives.
As authors we strive to grow our
characters from the first page to the end; God is also using the scenes
of our lives to mold us into the character of Christ. We’ll get hurt
and hurt others, stumble, and even fail along the way. We’ll jump from
the designated plans of the Author and shoot out on our own, complete
with consequences and U-turns.
But just as our characters
cannot flee the pages of our books, no matter how horribly wrong our
choices become, our lives are still bound within the love of God and
covered by His protective will. We
cannot outrun it, break it, or stop
it. We can’t mess up the pages so much that they’re beyond His editing
began the story of our lives and He always completes what He starts. He
will not allow us to go so far from His grace that He cannot find us
again. He doesn’t toss us into the dreaded “forget me” drawer. Once He
begins our stories, He diligently works to make us a masterpiece.
As we consider Christmas and how
the story of Jesus’ birth was written in the pages of the Bible before
He was even born, we can see how God’s Master Creation is reflected in
our lives, too. With the same immaculate care and precision by
which He planned Christ’s coming, He
planned our stories. We are not aimless sheets of paper left crumpled
on the floor. We are masterpieces, crafted by a passionate Storyteller
so in love with His works in progress, He edits them until they’re fit
He’s in love with His
characters, all sorts of characters! The classic characters, the
bad-guys-turned-good, the slapsticks, the cowboys, the businesswomen,
the nerds, the outcasts, the fallen, the think-outside-the-box ones,
the silly ones, the quiet and the loud ones: every possible kind you
And He finds joy in fashioning
the perfect narrative for each individual.
As we revel in the joys of
writing and create stories to inspire, remember that God rejoices over
Bound in the saving work of His
Son, God is writing the ultimate story on the pages of our hearts.
To inspire others to find Him,
just like those shepherds did over two thousand years ago.
The only happy ending (or
rather, happy beginning) is found in Him.
Pepper D. Basham - Pepper is a
native of the Blue Ridge Mountains, mom of five, pastor’s wife, and
university instructor. When she’s not sleeping, she’s creating
fictional worlds where good defeats evil, laughter reigns, and
adventure thrives. She won the Award of Excellence at BRMCWC in 2009,
the inspirational category of the TARA in 2010, and is a
double-finalist in the Genesis for 2011. She can be found causing
mischief at her group blog, The Writers Alley, or at www.pepperbasham.wordpress.com