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Fairy Tales, Good Versus Evil

As a father of 3 daughters, I have experienced my fair share of fairy tales. Whether it be watching the video (again), pretending to be any or all the characters, or mixing and matching storylines to suit the fancy of the Head Princess (that would be Grace, age 4 1/2), I'd say I am fairly fluent in the language of Fairyland.

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I see and appreciate the morals of the stories. Beauty, goodness, and bravery are commended above evil, wickedness, and selfishness. In the end, good triumphs and evil is overcome. Princesses find true love from princes. And everyone lives happily ever after.

But it was something my wife did recently that brought it all into focus for me. My fairy tale DNA providing the context for the following illustration.

Amy, my wife, was holding our youngest, Abby, who was semi-interested in holding an apple slice (primarily because her sisters we're holding apple slices and she didn't want to be left out). Now, an 8-month old baby's ability to maintain an effective grasp of an object they ARE interested in is unrefined to say the least (unless hair is involved for some reason).

and that is all that remains of what sounds like a really good story. I wrote those words seven months ago, but can't even recall why I didn't finish the thought (to be honest I can't even remember the thought itself or the incident that served as it's genesis).

Now, as I run through my memory in a futile attempt to piece together the Mystery of the Missing Story (as Gracie would call it), I'm struck graciously by a second lesson. Regret.

I've got some news for you (and me). Last night as we slept, the world kept turning and time kept ticking. Those hours aren't coming back. Life is dynamic. It moves with ZERO regard for our preferences. You can't go back. You can't fast forward. You can't pause it. But you can participate in it. You can be present in the experience. You can minimize the regret of neglect.

What I mean is this. Writing, to me, is the greatest experience of joy outside of my family and faith. Its my answer to the question of what I would do if I could do anything. Seven months ago, something happened in my everyday life that triggered the process in me of taking an experience and joyfully transforming it into a gospel-expressing gift that I could share with the world around me. And now it's gone. Left unfinished. That thing which thrills me most was interrupted, neglected, and forgotten.

God has hard-wired us each for certain joys. Pause for a moment and just consider that sentence. Your life and experience is not random, but designed, and your innermost make-up is built to run on 2 Double Joy sized batteries. Additionally, that's true for EACH of us. There is no factory in China churning out a few million of you every week. God crafts us each, one at a time, with intent and purpose. When we discover that, living really begins.

So whatever it is for you (writing, singing, teaching, leading, ???-ing), learn from my mistake. Don't neglect doing it. Don't turn away from it. Don't set it on the back burner. In fact, put a few things down that you currently have in your hands in order to get a better grip on it. Your passion. Your calling.

Seven months from now you'll be glad you did.

<[em>This was written two years ago, but I still find it stirring today and wanted to share it with you. Grace is now 6 1/2 and we have since added a new youngest, Rose, who just turned 6 months old. MCH]

Posted in Photograph Post Date 07/02/2017


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