The title of this blog was a phrase that was recently shared with me. It points to the need for us to consider that we don't know what's going on in someone else's life. It calls us away from our tendency to judge first and find out more information later.
When that person cuts you off in traffic, you don't know if they are rushing to the hospital to welcome a new baby or get to work on time so that aren't fired. Their actions might affect you, but we still don't know their story.
Knowing my own complicated family history, I learned early on to give others the "benefit of a doubt", that we didn't know what else was going on in their day or their lives. There is much that we don't know about one another and much that can be difficult to share.
Everyone has a story.
And in the midst of our own stories is God's story. From our first breath, we draw in the gift of life that was breathed into the beginnings of creation. From the moment we open our eyes, we see God at work in our lives - from the rising of the sun, the blooming of a flower to the relationships that are entrusted to each of us.
Its not so much that God enters into our story, but rather we are in God's story.
Yes, I know there are many who do not believe, who wear their atheism on their sleeve. This is one of the ways that people seek to make sense of their own life story - hence the variety of faiths and religions that make up our world. These various belief systems only enhance and give greater depth to that phrase that "everyone has a story".
As I look back over my own story - the ups and downs, joys and sorrows and even the mundane day to day routines - I see more than just memories or particular snapshots in time. I see that which has given shape to who I am today (good and bad).
More importantly, along my life's journey thus far, I see God. I see those people who God shared in my life who supported me during the rough parts when I couldn't do it myself. I see the moments of unequivocal joy that celebrated the goodness God has placed among us. I can peruse my own story and in all of it, there is God.
What is your story?
How has God been a part of that story?