Hello everyone! I wanted to take today to remind all of us that our stories matter! We may hold the key to someone’s freedom in our words. In our stories, others can find the courage they need to live one more day, leave the abusive partner and/or start a new life. In our stories, people will see that they are not alone in this world. In our stories, people see how much we do relate to one another, no matter what side of the planet we are on right now or what language we speak.
Our stories are not just for us. We live them to share them so that others may see all the possibility they have to do what they thought they could not do. Our stories span racial and economic divides like no other written or spoken word can. Our stories bring us together in all of our humanness; the good, the bad, the ugly and everything in-between. Our stories show us that we are more alike than different. Our stories can penetrate the stoniest heart and bring life to someone who has long sat in a cold, dark, place.
I am here to tell you today, tell your story! You story matters! You have no idea who you may help or whose life you may save! Your life has not been lived in vain and your life is not only for you. My story, the story of my abusive marriage and late husband’s suicide, became more powerful after it was told, in fact, it has taken on a life of its own. I can’t tell you how many people it has already inspired and helped! It will continue to inspire and help others too! Had I never told anyone and just moved on, what opportunities to help someone might I have missed? What responsibility do we have when we know something, and we know it will help people, and we do nothing about it? What are we missing when we don’t tell our story? Who are we hurting when we don’t tell our story?
Do you see what I’m getting at? I believe we have a responsibility as humans to tell our stories. I believe God never gives us anything unless He intends for us to use it to help others. I am not saying He causes our stories, good or bad, to happen to us; but He can use them to help others. He can use our stories to show them who He is and how much he loves them. What if by not telling my story, I withheld the love and mercy of God? Am I not responsible then for knowing and not telling someone who may desperately need mercy and love from the Father? I am not writing this to condemn anyone who has not put their story to paper. We all have to be sure the timing is right and stories can be told without putting pen to paper as I have done. I am writing to you today to encourage you and to admonish you to not keep silent! Silence can kill – it can kill you and others. If you have the opportunity to tell you story and shine light into someone’s life - do it! I promise you the momentary fear you feel will give way to delight when you see what words of life and love do for someone. The fact is, they are waiting for someone to tell them what only you can tell them!
Go and tell you stories and don’t be afraid! Your stories matter because they bring light and life! Your stories matter because you matter and you have more to say than you know. Your stories matter because God does not bring us through something for us to keep to ourselves or use it for selfish gain! Your stories have power that only you can tell! What are you waiting for? Telling my story for the rest of my life, Elizabeth