We have a story to share with you this week. Our road trip started at seven in the morning, early in the week. As the sun was coming up, we were settling into our thirteen hour drive. Just two hours into our adventure, Dr. Bell was pulled over! Everyone sat up straight and waited for the sentencing.
The officer approached the car and said, “Sir, you were driving in the left hand lane too long. That lane is only for passing cars.” Dr. Bell quickly apologized. Then from the backseat, buried in the blankets and pillows a small voice told the right story at the right time. The small voice said, “Sir, one time my mom was stopped and the police man didn’t give her a ticket. He gave me a sticker.”
We all started giggling…respectfully. The officer was doing his best to not smile. Then he said, “I’m just giving you a warning today. I’ll be right back.” As he walked away we started laughing. I am sure the truck was rocking to the rhythm of our laughter. The officer quickly returned and said, “Sir, here is your warning and here is your sticker little lady.” On the road again!
The right story at the right time can be a powerful moment. Telling a mother in the grocery store that you remember the day when your son had a melt down in the middle of the aisle can offer the mother a moment of grace. Telling a teenager that you can remember feeling insecure and scared can give her enough courage to try something new. Telling a co-worker that you know how to help them through a challenging season at work can give them enough support to complete the project.
Our stories offer encouragement and insight into situations. Jesus was the master story teller and always told the right story at the right time. Jesus stories still speak into our lives in powerful ways right when we need them. Once we become friends with Jesus, we become a part of the Jesus story.
The right story at the right time comes when we are aware of what is happening around us and when we are willing to share (even if you are speaking from under a pile of blankets in the backseat). It takes courage and prayer. There is someone in our lives each day that can use encouragement, courage, hope, love and grace. (That someone may even live with you in your tent!) Or maybe they need to see the situation from another perspective. Driving in the left hand lane too long may not be a bad offense like you thought it was originally. Our story may be the perfect story needed to help shine light in the midst of darkness and put us back on the road again.
Jesus’ disciples came and said to him, “Why do you use parables when you speak to the crowds?” Jesus replied, “Because they haven’t received the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but you have. Matthew 13:10-11
From our Happy Tent to Yours,