I just finished reading an incredible book, Jesus, My Father, The CIA, and Me: A Memoir… of Sorts. It is the memoir of a man who is not very old and not particularly famous. His story doesn’t involve extraordinary feats of strength or daring, and while he had an incredibly difficult and painful childhood (growing up with an abusive, alcoholic father), his story is not exceedingly unusual. In short, his life doesn’t meet the criteria that I have often thought necessary to write a memoir.
Please don’t misunderstand the previous paragraph as critique. This book is amazing! I lost hours of sleep because I could not put it down, and I would highly recommend it. But this is not intended to be a book review. A handful of times I have thought about writing my own memoir, not for publication but for my own sake. I wonder what it would be like to work through my experiences (being a child of divorce, revival at Wheaton College, struggles in youth ministry, etc.) as I put electronic pen to electronic paper.
Cron’s story encouraged me to think more deeply about my life as a story. His ability to artfully show the presence of God threaded throughout his life particularly in his experiences with the sacrament of Holy Communion made me think more intentionally about the themes in my life. If I were to commit my story to paper, what would plot be, what themes would continue to show up? In other words, what story is God telling in my life, and how should I respond?
What about you? What if you looked at your life as a story? What story is God telling? What are the recurring themes? How do you think God is inviting you to step into the story as his co-author?