Stories of grace

This week’s writing prompt from Amanda, @amandalumays on Instagram:

Your story is still being written. As long as you are living you have not reached the end of your story. Maybe you can’t fix everything that is broken. That’s okay, none of us have fixed all the broken places within us. Instead, can you focus on where the light pours in?

Too often the stories I tell myself are about the broken places, the stories that renew the hurt with each retelling. Is that why I replay them, because I somehow believe I deserve the pain? But if Jesus has forgiven me, who am I to say that I know better than he?

The hardest person to forgive is oneself.

Stories of grace, stories about the times the light shone in, stories about the times the light shone out and brightened someone’s path–these are the stories I need to tell myself. The Psalms are rich with such stories, remembering God’s saving goodness in the past in order to find hope and joy in the present.

Let me tell you a story then, just one. It was a brilliant day, sunny and dry after the rain, chilly, but with only a gentle breeze. It was not a day for staying inside, not with me regaining my strength after major surgery and feeling almost chipper.

Corky drove me to Durand Eastman Park. I walked the Durand Lake trail, skipping the shortcuts. The trail was up and down and uneven under foot, but sturdy shoes kept the bunion under control.

It felt good to be out on the trail again, really good. I can do this, I thought. And if 2020 were to be my only chance to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail, I could do that too, not easily, but I could do it.

Granted, that was before the bunion and associated arthritis had me telling the surgeon that I did not want to put 2100 plus miles on my right foot in its current condition.

But here I am, the day after bunion surgery, with the arthritis all cleaned out, telling myself this story of light and hope.

God is good.