Stay in the Story

It’s mid-morning and the cat’s taken refuge on an island of sunshine on the front porch swing.

I watch her from the kitchen window. She closes eyes, curls around that warmth, her tail, now and then, waving from sunny shores. Under these undecided autumn skies, she’s found her place.

It’s mid-morning and I’m struggling to find mine.

Phone to confirm doctor appointment? Chop squash for dinner? Hang out the laundry? Phonograms with Kai? Latin with Levi? So many necessary things pressing–What’s best to be next?

From the kitchen window too, I watch the leaves of the scarlet maple whisper farewell before the rustling of her bags, the brisk whisking away in the wind. Lost leaves.

It’s mid-morning and I’m feeling that, a bit lost. Lost in a world that’s spinning. Markets free-fall and children starve and the globe’s dizzy, shrieking, with crises, staggering losses.

In a turbulent world, it’s easy—no, likely— to get lost, lose our way, our place.

It can be scary.

I turn from the kitchen window and see the prayer bench with Bible open. And too, tucked here and there, towheads arch over pages. Children immersed in story.

I take a deep breath and remember: We’re only lost when we’re outside The Story. We’re only angst-ridden when we’ve lost our place in God’s grand narrative. We’re only unsteady when we’ve slipped from the Word and into the whirl.

The world, our lives, need context. Not simply analysts or experts groping to make sense of the pieces, but a gathering of the fragments, a collecting of all the snippets, and laying them into The Grand Scheme of Things. In the context of Scripture, our lives make sense. Created by the Creator, we on this globe are made to live out our story within the pages of The Story. And carry The Story throughout the globe.

Because in the Book, we meet the Person of Peace. Become people of peace.

The children read and the cat suns and the leaves fall and the world hurtles and I kneel at the prayer bench, run hand across the page. I reread the verse I underlined in the dawning. Read the one following it.

Then, unannounced, come ones we’ve been memorizing. Ones too we’ve been listening to during mealtimes, playing in the stereo. Others we’ve been meditating on during family prayer.

I’m making my way back into The Story again.

In the midst of domestic disequilibrium and global turmoil, I feel something… like a rock. An island refuge. I close my eyes, settle.

I’ve found my place.

Lord, when I’m feeling lost and anxious, I’ve just wandered out of Your story, a lost character. When I’m scared, it’s a sign: I need to settle back into The Story. In its Pages, I find my place. And You, the Person of Peace.

“Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4)

Related Reading: The Bible Kindles @ Desiring God
Become the Story

Photo: cat on front porch, used with permission from Hope V.