When Story Waits

by | Jul 6, 2012 | Five Minute Friday

We’re on a scavenger hunt for lost items, the three of us while the man works. His mysteriously missing Ipod and her art canvas we bought weeks ago so she can sing with a brush of soppy color in summer’s sigh. I find the Ipod tucked under the couch cushions, the first place I look, along with the glasses he’s missing now for weeks.

While we scavenge through drawers and cabinets, I open the armoire where the games stack sideways, ask which games they want to take to the cottage and leave behind. And this opens the lid on “I’ve always wanted to play that game, but you wouldn’t let me” conversations.

They point to Cranium and Guesstures and Taboo and they are right, they’ve never played them because they weren’t old enough yet when they asked.

On the fourth of July, while I finish washing the last of dishes of raclette, she sets up Cranium on the coffee table and we team up gender. And while we act and draw and create with clay, laughter swirls acrobatic and I marvel over who they’ve become, these kids transforming into adults.

And isn’t this how most of life works? We want to play the game, know the highlights of our story before we are ready to read the instructions and understand how to play.

Skipping steps of the game only to capture an empty victory.

Only He knows when time marches ready for us to enter the next chapter of the story He pens called Life.  And what if, in the meantime, He says, “Don’t open it yet, you’re not ready, just wait?”

Joining Lisa-Jo for Five Minute Friday with the one word prompt: Story and Michelle for Graceful Summer.



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  1. Linda Stoll

    Yes! He knows what we’re ready to handle and when. And will be with us as we venture into each new door, opportunity, game! What surprises await!

  2. Sarah Koci Scheilz

    Shelly . . . sweet friend, I needed this today. Thank you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Sarah, it makes me smile knowing it was a timely word for you friend.

  3. eil1een

    Beautiful. Oh how often I’ve been eager to jump in before reading the instructions!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Me too. I often want to know how the story is going to end when I may only be just starting it.

  4. Christina

    Fun! We love playing games too. My post yesterday was about games:) So many great conversations happen when we play. Blessings!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We actually hadn’t played in a while and they were so up for it, I was thrilled. We had a blast and I saw a whole side of their personalities that I don’t see all the time.

  5. Ells....ro elliott

    Skipping steps of the game only to capture an empty victory…love this line…and some of the sweetest memories of family is us playing games…laughing and talking together. xoxo to you my friend…have a sweet weekend:)

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I can imagine your family gathered over a game and enjoying every minute. Thanks Ro, hope you have a wonderful weekend too.

  6. Jennifer

    Beautiful pictures! I look forward to when my kids are old enough to play those games, too, but in the meantime, I’ll treasure coloring. 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I actually miss some of those times coloring . . . and watching cartoons . . .and reading with them before bed. Treasure those moments. Thanks for stopping by.

  7. tereasamansfield

    Ha, I love this. I wrote a very similar post to be published on Monday. My youngest son has been having many hard times recently, most of which center on what is still too young for. I realize I’m not much different. It is wonderful to discover that God is speaking similar lessons to friends.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yes, I do love those sacred echoes. And with blogging they become even more evident. Look forward to reading your Monday post, your on top of it!

  8. Jennifer Johnson Camp

    I love this picture of your life-filled home, your family around you playing games. And I completely relate to this: “We want to play the game, know the highlights of our story before we are ready to read the instructions and understand how to play.” Thank you!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I cheated, the photo is actually my aunt and uncles house in Canada. I’ve been anticipating our vacation to that part of the world, so its on my mind. And yes, we are similar in this regard. I want to know how things turn out before I chart the course and that rarely happens, if ever.

  9. Dea Moore

    The story comes when we are hunting around looking for things missing…it waits for us.

    (Suggestion: Take a puzzle to the cottage too. We bought a vintage one at Goodwill for a dollar. It was the hardest puzzle we ever put together and only 500 pieces. One piece was missing but that was okay. We do puzzles on vacations and when it snows…so almost never. But I sat over three puzzles the last couple of weeks with my 16 year old. What a blessing—- except I get stuck doing them upside down.)

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I love that Dea, how the story waits for us to come and hunt it down. We do puzzles at the cottage too. Lots of fun. I love those carefree days of doing much of nothing. Can’t wait, just two weeks from today until we leave. Glad you had that kind of time too.

  10. simplystriving

    Oh you spoke right into my heart today, Shelly. Of course, I’m beginning to expect as much. And when I sit down to play mousetrap for the 22nd time today, I’ll smile wide and savor long….

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh, I remember those days of repetitive playing that often lulled me to sleep. There were many times that I fell asleep on the floor of their bedrooms while playing dolls or a game. Then you forget that you liked to play games at all and it all starts over again!

  11. charinabrooks

    Just want to say thank you Shelley….

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Lovely to see you here Charina, hope you are doing well.

  12. Christy

    Oh…that house…it makes my heart swoon! And that path, well loved and well travelled. The corner store will never be the same though…sigh. Loved your post. And I love colouring with my girl! Did you know we have another on the way?? =) February. Winter will swell the seams of our house once more.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It makes me swoon too, all of it. I can’t wait to get there. Was hoping someone in the family would see those photos. And I know what you mean about the corner store, so tragic isn’t it? I didn’t know you had another on the way. Wow! You and Ann and Jon. We’re going to have lots of babies around soon. Yay! I love that line Christy – winter will swell the seams of our house once more. So glad to hear from you.

  13. Pam@Writing...Apples of Gold

    Your last line jumps out at me… because I do seem to be “waiting” for His next move, open doors, direction. But SO glad He knows where this story is going and that something Ephesians 3:20 must be out there even though I’ve been inundated with “you just aren’t right for it” lately. I have an idea for a direction brewing, and seeking His lead on that too. Good analogies here. And I love lighting you achieved on the path photo… 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Pam, all those closed doors may just be needed in order for you to step through the right one. I’m praying for you daily with expectation. Thanks for visiting today.

      • Pam@Writing...Apples of Gold

        Thanks for your prayers. I do know that… just discouraging at times and then I pick myself back up and into His arms. He knows the situation and has it under control even when we can’t see… I’ve been praying for you too… 🙂 Enjoy your upcoming cottage time!

  14. Sandra Heska King

    The way you tied it all together with that last paragraph. You know how to write a story!

    And this line: “. . . so she can sing with a brush of soppy color in summer’s sigh.” I had to savor that one a while.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Sandy, so thankful for your encouragement. It means a lot to me. Really.

  15. kelli- AdventurezInChildRearing

    beautiful story – thank you for sharing 😉

  16. debra elramey (@elramey)

    We want to play the game, know the highlights of our story before we are ready to read the instructions and understand how to play.
    Why is that? Why does it take a lifetime to learn to play by the instructions!
    Glorious work dear Shelly. Your joy is intrinsic in your art.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It’s that ole sinful nature that thinks if we can somehow control everything and do it our way it will make us happy. Started with an apple. Thanks for your sweet encouragment Debra.

  17. altarofheaven

    “And isn’t this how most of life works? We want to play the game, know the highlights of our story before we are ready to read the instructions and understand how to play.”

    “Skipping steps of the game only to capture an empty victory.”

    Oh yes! This post spoke to me!! My husband says I like to see how the story ends before it begins 🙂 I’m used to being a Hare, rushing through to find out the end. I am learning to rest in Jesus Christ. To wait, tarry, abide knowing their is no ’empty’ victory in Him! Thank you for sharing!

    • altarofheaven

      oops…’there’ not ‘their’

      you see, I rushed Lol

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m the same way about wanting to know how things end before they begin. And my husband reminds me too! 🙂 I’m trying to rest and wait, so we’re in this together. Let’s encourage each other in this shall we?

      • altarofheaven

        Yes, we shall! I’m thankful for you 🙂

  18. lolitavalle

    And all I can say is “How beautiful an analogy this is.” I am in awe at the giver of marvelous thoughts and encouraging (as apples of gold) words. Such a splendid reflection that ripples where I am.

    Happy to be here, Shelly.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      A reflection that ripples where I am – I could see that. The same water rippling on separate shores. Beautiful.

  19. Michelle DeRusha

    Wow, what a powerful metaphor. Shelly. I tend to rush through the instructions and then wonder why the victory feels empty. You’ve got me thinking this morning, girl!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Michelle. Me too, want to rush to the end instead of enjoying the journey. I’m learning to slow down and savor the moment instead of living in tomorrow.

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