This year, it seems as if everyone is having babies! Book babies, that is. I’ve been watching friends of mine pant and push and press their way to publishing their stories. I have cheered for them and paced the halls with them. I’ve cried when the rejections came. I’ve prayed when all those words seemed as if they’d never make an appearance on the page. I’ve rejoiced when agents and editors and publishers said, “Yes! Yes, we want to help you tell your story to the world!”
Last weekend, I sat in a crowd at the Refresh My Heart Conference, and listened as Michelle read from her book, Spiritual Misfit. Sitting there, watching her dream come true, and listening to people laughing at all the right moments, was a beautiful experience. I could not keep from weeping as I sat there in the audience. When Michelle got done speaking, she sold out of all the books she’d brought with her to the conference!
Believe it or not, this is just the tip of the iceberg. More books are coming this year, from more of my friends. Every single story is one you’ll want to get your hands on. Because every story matters.
You may not be a blogger or an author, but you’ve got a story. And we need to hear it.
“Why?” you ask? I imagine there are women out there, watching all these books being born, and thinking her story doesn’t matter—that it’s not book-worthy or blog-worthy or whatever-worthy. But isn’t that so far from the truth? Every single story matters. Every single one.
Last week, right here in this space, an anonymous writer shared a #GoingThere story of growing up with a grandfather who was a member of the KKK. The story was tough to tell, but that brave story teller opened up a window and let us breathe deep gulps of fresh air. Anonymous’ story served as Lisha Epperson‘s invitation to tell her story, and open up another window. More fresh air.
We are a generation of storytellers, following in the footsteps of Jesus, the ultimate weaver of story. He entered our story to change the ending for each of us. And so, we find ourselves stewards of the gift of storytelling.
This year, Michelle and I are telling our story together, along with 28 others, as part of the inRL gathering, April 25 and 26. This is the (un)conference’s third year, and this year’s theme is, We Need YOUR Story. Your story of friendship, community, faith, life. It matters. You won’t want to miss this conference, right in your own backyard (or living room).
Visit (in)courage for all the details. The inRL conference is free, and open to everyone.