Everybody has a story. Like any good novel, each person’s story has a central theme. If your life were a book, what would the theme be?

Recently I visited my aging parents and became acutely aware of my own mortality. How do I want to be remembered? What do I want written on my tombstone? Scripture says our lives are like a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes (James 4:14) and reminds us that our days are numbered (Ps. 39:4). Heaven only knows how long each story will be.

The central theme of my life is the theme of faith. Mine has been a journey to learn to trust myself, others, and above all, God. This theme, like a brilliant golden thread, has been woven through the tapestry of my life. Every day presents opportunities to respond in either faith or fear. Will I trust? Will I step out in faith? Shall I believe in myself? Others? God? Will I continue to hope?

Each time I answer “yes”, the needle weaves the thread once more and joins the fabric of my life to a much greater tapestry. This month, millions have been watching as “The Bible” mini-series airs on the History channel. As this true story unfolds, we have seen the thread of faith being woven into the life of many, beginning with the life of Abraham, then Moses, David, and ultimately, Jesus the Christ.

These people were all people of faith and each affected the course of history. Did you know that as the result of Abraham’s failure to trust God by having a child, Ishmael,by his wife’s servant, the world endures the Palestinian/Israeli conflict? Look it up. But the central figure in this story is Jesus, the Messiah. This one man’s life, and even more so, his death and resurrection, continue to affect millions even to this day. His story gives us hope and strength to endure our circumstances. As I said to my mom, “Didn’t Jesus suffer? Are we any better than he?” No, we are not Jesus, but we can, through his power and grace, overcome the trials and tribulations of life and write the next chapter in our lives.

Whatever the theme of your life, the next chapter is not yet written. What would you like it to say? How do you want to be remembered? What will your contribution be to this world? My prayer is that this post has encouraged you in some way. No matter what your age, you can write a new chapter. Until next time, feel free to share your thoughts and as always, keep looking up!

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