My pastor reminds us that each time we meet, there is a story on every pew that can break your heart. I know some of those stories, and I know that he is right. I also know that we need to hear each other’s stories if we are to know and trust and help each other.
” It always amazes me to think that every house on every street is full of so many stories; so many triumphs and tragedies, and all we see are yards and driveways. ~Glenn Close, American Film and Stage Actress
Part of my daily walk takes me by the front yards of houses in our neighborhood, but the last mile or so of the walk is around a small lake behind the back of houses with wrought iron fences. I see beautiful landscaping, luxurious pools, and groupings of comfortable outdoor furniture. Some even have outdoor kitchens. I enjoy my walks, but I very seldom see another person except the few who are on the path for jogging or cycling. The only signs of life are the dogs in several of the back yards. I don’t see the stories, but I know that they are there.
Wendell Berry expands this need for story in What Are People For? “When a community loses its memory, its members no longer know one another. How can they know one another if they have forgotten or have never learned one another’s stories? If they do not know one another’s stories, how can they know whether or not to trust one another? People who do not trust one another do not help one another, and moreover they fear one another. And this is our predicament now.”
I want to be a part of a community that has not lost its memory. I do not want to forget. Writing and blogging is one way I share my story with you, a hospitality of spirit for me. What about you? In what ways do you tell your story and how are you able to listen to that of others?