Story Unfolding, Part One

I have a weakness for ideas.

Nothing jazzes me more than a good philosophical discussion, one where the parties need to define terms and stretch their minds and take tried-and-true beliefs and dissect them to keep them fresh and authentic.

It’s the reason why 90% of the books I read are nonfiction, why I listen to podcasts that challenge me intellectually, why I read blogs that probe the profound.

So it was natural for me to tune in to the discussion on Story Unfolding last week. Picture a round-table conversation between some of the most thoughtful Christian artists of our day (Margaret Becker, Anne Jackson, Natalie Grant, Shaun Groves, Pete Wilson and more), and you’ll get a feel for what went on.

As you might expect, this group didn’t stay in the shallow end. They dove right into the deep. What does it mean to be a story-teller today? How was the church not done a good job of empowering the story-tellers? What does relevant mean? How are you refining your story-telling skills?

Heady concepts. It was fascinating to listen to the exchange of ideas and opinions. They weren’t dealing with details. They were dreaming big, trying to see outside of the frame.

And honestly, it left me feeling a little marginalized.

In my pre-kid life, I used to swim in a creative environment, where ideas were exchanged and discussed and sometimes even battled. I also used to dream big. It’s the reason I was producing a newscast for NBC when I was 26. I wanted to have influence. To be excellent. To be relevant. To have a voice – preferably, a powerful one – that was heard in our decibel-breaking culture.

But these days? The exchange of ideas looks more like, “I don’t care that you want to eat marshmallows for breakfast. It’s Cheerios or eggs and that’s final.” And dreaming big might mean that I hope to get an hour by myself in the afternoon to write or read or think without interruption.

It can be discouraging. Being a stay-at-home mom to three young kids leaves me little time to do anything outside of change diapers, make meals and plan activities to keep these little bodies active and engaged.

Watching the discussion on Story Unfolding made me feel like I have no voice, no impact, no story to tell. (Unless you want to talk about babies who eat Polly Pocket shoes.)

(To be continued tomorrow ... or maybe later today, if that hour to myself materializes.)

(Continued ... umm ... two days later. You can read part two here.)


  1. But, I love the story of the baby that ate the Polly Pocket shoes.

  2. can't wait to hear the rest of your thoughts ... these are some things I'm struggling with myself lately.

  3. Is it too early to say ME TOO before I know the rest of what you're going to say? This storyline just seems so very familiar. I love that you "get it", and even more that you can articulate it so well. I really wish I could bring my canning jars over and we could refresh the pantry and our spirits in one afternoon.

  4. I'm looking forward to the next part too. I do get what you're saying, my wheels are turning with yours.

    There's something on the tip of my brain about how invisible and visible we moms are. I can't articulate it...

    gee, that was clear.

  5. I totally get you. I was one of those girls who refused to believe her brain would turn to mush once kids arrived. I try and try, but I find that I think less, forget more, and just have this ho-hum thought life. Sometimes I wonder if my tired brain CAN think deeply anymore. (Or maybe it's just fried from editing Gary's seminary papers...endless... deep... often over-my-head seminary papers...)

    I can't wait for part two. If it's any consolation, you make me laugh a lot and THINK a lot too. You do still have a voice, but now the audience is just a bit different. There's no hesitation when I say that you are an encourager of MOMS. You are influential, excellent and relevant. I'm sure your kids would agree!

  6. Looks to me like you've got an amazing voice right here on this blog! I'm a firm believer that God uses your "story" in ways you could never imagine!

    Keep up the great work!

  7. I know this is such a battle as a stay at home mom, but I try to remember that I have the opportunity to impact 2 little ones in a mighty way. Building into them so they can make a difference in this world. It's just hard to see the fruit of it right now, mostly I just see nasty poo in the numerous diapers. :) looking forward to your next post!!

  8. I'm sorry...did I write this post?

    I so relate.

  9. absolutely. right there.

    part 2? who needs sleep when there are stories to tell?

  10. I'm a mom of three too, and I've yet to reach part two of the story. Sometimes I wonder if there is a part two, or if I'm going to feel like my brain cells are dying daily forever:)

  11. One of the hard things for me is that daily chores don't yield lasting results. Every thing I do, I have to do over and over, leaving the feeling of accomplishing nothing.

    Our pastor recently challenged us to consider our legacy. I'm working on it.

    The idea is that our children are watching us. And they will catch how we live, even if they don't hear what we say. Our attituded, values and faith (or lack thereof) will be reflected in future generations. So we need to actively shape what we pass on.

    That's pretty heady stuff! I'm not sure what career could boast such a longterm impact.

    I can't wait to hear the rest of your story. :)


  12. this is good stuff because we can all relate. it's amazing how your life gets swept in a new direction when you become a mother.