Titling my very first blog post “Endings” seems odd, doesn’t it? Shouldn’t this be about beginnings?
Well, you see, two weeks ago when I had planned to launch A Storyful Life, I found myself at a special ending instead. It was Valentine’s Day – “The perfect day for beginning a blog,” my head said. It was indeed the “perfect day” for me to do something special, but it didn’t involve this blog. It was better. In fact, I was given a Valentine’s gift I will cherish for all my Valentine’s Days to come.
That Valentine’s morning I got to read Psalms aloud and hold my Grandmother’s hand as she stepped into eternity. I couldn’t have planned to be there. It was so peaceful. All it took was one exhale, and her earthly life came to an end.
So that’s why I sit here starting something new and yet contemplating endings. And really Grandma is the “just fine” – as she would say – way to start this blog because she truly had a storyful life.
What is a storyful life? A storyful life is defined (in the 2015 Kristen’s Dictionary) as follows:
a storyful life (n.) an existence enlivened by lovely letters, wise words and terrific tales; a journey through time enriched by knowing the Author of All Time, the Lord Jesus Christ, and wondering over the work He is weaving every day.
Grandma’s life became richer, sweeter and fuller with the books she read, the letters she wrote and received, and the adventures she lived, especially as she grew in seeing herself as a part of God’s story. Best of all, she didn’t keep her treasure trove to herself. Oh, no! She shared her bounty with many, making other lives richer, sweeter and fuller. And like the stories we love best, Grandma’s story has a thoroughly happy ending: At long last, she is with the Valentine of her soul, Jesus, and, by His grace, the Valentine of 58 years of her life, Grandpa.
Today I can look back on Grandma’s storyful life and see how tales tied together to transform her life tapestry into a heaven-bound masterpiece. But for me and anyone reading this blog, there are sagas unfinished, rows not woven. Oh, the possibilities abound! And yet, with all the unknowns, I know enough of what my ending will be like to look forward to it. I hope you can, too.
That is what A Storyful Life is for: enjoying the journey from beginning to end while telling the tales, marveling over the mysteries, pondering poems and lovingly crafting letters. You’ll likely encounter snippets from Grandma woven in along the way. When we come to the end, I hope and pray that from reading any words woven with warmth here your life might grow a bit more “storyful” as well.
And maybe we’ll find that our endings can actually flow into beginnings. For Grandma, her earthly life came to an end, but that was the beginning of a her whole new life. As the ending of “Amazing Grace” puts it:
“When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’ve first begun.”