As an author, publisher and writing coach, books are constantly on my mind. Last night I finished editing a manuscript which will soon become a book, a memoir. The writer will “hold her life in her hands” in print. She wrote an important legacy which her grown children, grandchildren, great-grands and onward will cherish. Several more such life-stories are waiting their turn in the wings for my help in editing so the dreams of other writers can be fulfilled.
I look at my life too as a book with chapters. Since I've written many life-chapters already, I look back now that I'm living my summit chapter and feel as if I were a different person in each of those chapters. In a sense, as I matured I assumed various roles in the individual chapters (seasons) of my life. I'm still the same protagonist, the unchanging leading character throughout my non-fiction life-book. But without question, I'm satisfied to acknowledge God as the Author.
We’re always told not to read the last chapter of a book to see how it turned out; let's keep up the suspense and wait to be surprised. The Mother of Jesus was unique, however, because God gave her a prophetic peek through old Simeon at the Presentation of baby Jesus in the temple. He revealed one of the later chapters of her life that would pierce her heart. I'm not privy to such a revelation; perhaps it is best that all of us are spared that glimpse. Either we would be too eager to reach the happy ending of our life-story—or drag our feet, if we knew in advance about some trauma or trial that is to come.
I”m a bookworm too; I inhale books, so to speak. As a writer, I think in chapters. I love to read all kinds of books, especially biographies and dramatic New York Times bestsellers, if they are clean. If I have any addiction, it is that I overindulge when I read an exciting book—once started, I gorge myself. I'm intemperate; I swallow the book whole, gobble it up almost at one sitting, if it's a real page-turner. I feel compelled to read it straight through to the finish. Let the world go by; nothing else will get done. And I always want another good book ready to caboose on this one, when I finish the last page of the current one.
Our lives are like the chapters in a biography. In the first few pages we have the front matter, the copyright page—the “birth certificate”—then the foretaste that launches our story—the Acknowledgments, Foreword, Introduction, maybe a Preface. God has determined the venue for our lives, chosen our DNA and the circumstances where our life-drama will take place under His providence. He chose the plot and the characters who will interact with us in life but allowed ample choice through our free will. It’s bound to be a real page-turner!
Each of my life-chapters is separate and chronologically progressive. No single chapter is the whole book; the plot and subplots keep unfolding, so I shouldn't get bent out of shape at how things seem to be turning out in a particular chapter. God is at work developing the whole exciting adventure story of my life. I shouldn't despair half way through. I must hang in there—everything will work out, if I belong to Him. The kids, whose diapers I changed in one chapter, will walk down the aisle in cap and gown and later in wedding apparel. The stuff I worry about which I don’t think I can possibly live through, may not even be there when I'm living in the next chapter.
God is good, so I can anticipate a generous basket full of serendipity times and events and adventures that will contribute to the fulfilling of God's purposes for my life. And a ton of ordinary days and seeming non-events. I'll find out that the trivials and humdrum routines are the building blocks to develop holiness. The Mother of Jesus and his foster father Joseph surely must have experienced many joyful but ordinary, mundane, homespun times with Jesus as He was growing up. Not everything they said and did would have been quotable, earth-shaking, and worthy of holy writ, otherwise the gospels would have included those in Jesus' biography.
Since my life is made up of so many commonplace daily doings, I'm determined to enjoy each chapter as the pages turn and treasure the beloved characters who are living it with me. In my life-book some characters will come and others will go. I must keep offering to God all things joyful and painful and accept His well-plotted plan for my life-story. It's a given that I should live fully in the present chapter until God provides a segue and starts to write the first line of the next chapter.
There are times in my life when I thought surely I reached the last chapter, and God must be getting ready to close my book. I can't second-guess God! When I approached my eightieth year, I thought I'd written the final chapter in my literally about-to-be-published autobiography. What more could God possibly plan for me to experience in life? What further ways to serve Him during what people regard as our declining years?
That was 14 years ago! Little did I know that not one but several more incredible life-chapters (and a dozen plus books) were still ahead. Instead of being finished, I was on the verge of more paradigm changes in my life.
I'm always eager for God’s breathtaking, fantastic surprises in each next chapter! Aren't you? Ultimately, after God concludes His last chapter of my earthly life-story, I look forward to an ample Epilogue, a fitting climax—Eternity in the Presence of the Blessed Trinity!
As they say, “The best is yet to come!”
So let's celebrate each chapter as a loving gift from God!
The Rest of The Way
“You Have the Right to Remain Silent”
10/31/2019 2:38:00 PM by: Leona Choy
WHO IS SHAKING MY TREE?
10/30/2019 5:06:00 PM by: Leona Choy
WHO IS THE BOSS OF ME?
10/15/2019 10:37:00 AM by: Leona Choy
LORD, MOVE MY MOUNTAIN!
10/13/2019 3:11:00 PM by: Leona Choy
ANOTHER WAITING ROOM
10/11/2019 9:36:00 AM by: Leona Choy
DON'T BE SHEEPISH
10/10/2019 12:33:00 PM by: Leona Choy
THE VALUE OF SELF-TALK
9/28/2019 3:59:00 PM by: Leona Choy
9/27/2019 12:35:00 PM by: Leona Choy
THANKS FOR THE MEMORY
9/12/2019 1:39:00 PM by: Leona Choy
CARRY ME, FATHER
9/5/2019 3:11:00 PM by: Leona Choy
MY PERSONAL SPIRITUAL WORKOUT
9/4/2019 10:55:00 AM by: Leona Choy
PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
9/1/2019 12:08:00 PM by: Leona Choy
Lessons from My Cup
8/20/2019 3:33:00 PM by: Leona Choy
STRAW & THE CAMEL'S BACK
8/7/2019 12:38:00 PM by: Leona Choy
BECOMING MORE "FRUITY"
7/10/2019 5:17:00 PM by: Leona Choy
7/3/2019 2:27:00 PM by: Leona Choy
PITCHING IT RIGHT
6/30/2019 11:46:00 AM by: Leona Choy
“WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU GROW UP?”
6/25/2019 3:01:00 PM by: Leona Choy
34580 and COUNTING
6/18/2019 2:11:00 PM by: Leona Choy
MOUNTAINS AND MOLEHILLS
6/14/2019 9:54:00 AM by: Leona Choy
6/6/2019 9:52:00 AM by: Leona Choy
HANDS ON THE PLOW
5/22/2019 11:38:00 AM by: Leona Choy
WAITING FOR GRADUATION DAY
5/17/2019 3:46:00 PM by: Leona Choy
I THINK BOOKS
5/13/2019 12:06:00 PM by: Leona Choy
ONLY TALK WITH YOUR MOUTH FULL!
5/4/2019 8:35:00 PM by: Leona Choy
4/18/2019 12:47:00 PM by: Leona Choy
4/7/2019 1:47:00 PM by: Leona Choy
TOO MUCH ON MY PLATE?
3/31/2019 5:23:00 PM by: Leona Choy
EARTH SUIT vs SPACE SUIT: Increasing Tension
3/4/2019 3:37:00 PM by: Leona Choy
AVOIDING A SPIRITUAL "OOPS!"
3/1/2019 12:06:00 PM by: Leona Choy
2/19/2019 1:29:00 PM by: Leona Choy
A THORNY MATTER
2/15/2019 10:42:00 AM by: Leona Choy
A SOMEWHAT GRUMPY CHAT WITH GOD
2/12/2019 9:54:00 AM by: Leona Choy
A FISH STORY
2/8/2019 3:40:00 PM by: Leona Choy
LET'S EAT NOODLES TOGETHER!
1/21/2019 3:07:00 PM by: Leona Choy
SATISFIED--A SECRET TO SHARE
1/11/2019 7:22:00 PM by: Leona Choy
12/29/2018 7:22:00 PM by: Leona Choy
RESISTANCE TO ASSISTANCE
12/6/2018 5:17:00 PM by: Leona Choy
CHALLENGE OF THE FOURTH QUARTER
11/26/2018 3:19:00 PM by: Leona Choy
KEEPING A TRADITION
11/15/2018 9:14:00 AM by: Leona Choy
PUBLISHING FUND PROGRESS
11/5/2018 8:58:00 AM by: Leona Choy
"GOING STEADY" WITH MY "SUGAR CANE"
11/3/2018 2:02:00 PM by: Leona Choy
A SHOUT-OUT FOR A NEW BUTTERFLY
10/31/2018 3:24:00 PM by: Leona Choy
THANKSGIVING IN OCTOBER
10/7/2018 5:53:00 PM by: Leona Choy
9/30/2018 3:16:00 PM by: Leona Choy
SHINING WHEN YOUR BATTERY IS LOW
9/21/2018 5:32:00 PM by: Leona Choy
I DESERVE IT...DESERVE IT NOT....
9/13/2018 7:54:00 PM by: Leona Choy
WHAT'S IN A NAME?
9/10/2018 12:35:00 PM by: Leona Choy
WAITING FOR GOD'S DUE TIME
9/3/2018 7:29:00 PM by: Leona Choy
STONES AND COVERUPS AND HOLY EARS
8/31/2018 10:44:00 AM by: Leona Choy
IT'S ALL ABOUT SHOES
8/29/2018 9:30:00 AM by: Leona Choy
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS MY CELL TOWER
8/27/2018 3:47:00 PM by: Leona Choy
REJUVENATION GOD'S WAY
8/17/2018 8:49:00 AM by: Leona Choy
STUCK IN THE MUD?
8/13/2018 7:22:00 PM by: Leona Choy
TWINKLE TWINKLE LITTLE STAR
8/8/2018 2:07:00 PM by: Leona Choy
WHEN'S A GOOD TIME TO "EXULT"?
7/30/2018 3:00:00 PM by: Leona Choy
Survey For the Calendar-Challenged
7/25/2018 2:42:00 PM by: Leona Choy
7/19/2018 10:25:00 AM by: Leona Choy
BEDROOM SLIPPERS OR HIKING BOOTS?
7/18/2018 10:44:00 AM by: Leona Choy
Hurrah for the Prepper Bridesmaids!
7/13/2018 6:01:00 PM by: Leona Choy
THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
7/10/2018 5:35:00 PM by: Leona Choy
6/5/2018 2:01:00 PM by: Leona Choy