As I sit here, at the kitchen table, I find myself in a similar situation to that of one of my teenage cousins. For homework over February break, her English teacher had given the following assignment (paraphrased):
Write a short story on any topic of your choice. The story must be at least 1 and ½ pages long, but can be longer.
Choice? The freedom to choose is a good thing, right?
I recently learned that I have been dubbed, “the writer in the family”. As such, my cousin requested my help with this particular assignment. Specifically, she needed assistance with settling on a topic. Now, I’m not up-to-date with what teens are interested in these days—or what they find inspiring—so I asked her:
What was the last book that you read? What kind of books do you like to read?
Personally, I find this assignment—despite its simplicity—a little overwhelming. It’s extremely similar to the process of penning a blog entry. There is a plethora of topics that I could write about, could share…and, yet, when it comes time to write, I’ve got nothing. I thought, that if I asked myself the questions that I’d asked her, maybe I’d come up with a subject for this entry.
The truth is, I haven’t read a book from cover-to-cover in a very long time. I’m currently reading my way through three different books (a guide for writing Christian Fiction, a novel by Janet Evanovich, and a tome that leans toward cultural anthropology).
My cousin listed books that I’m unfamiliar with…yet another indication that I’m behind the times. I tried to play it cool, disguise my lack of knowledge, and asked:
What was the last TV show that you watched?
She replied, “The Vampire Diaries”.
I’M FAMILIAR WITH “THE VAMPIRE DIARIES”! In fact, I was in LOVE with that show circa 2010-2012.
She listed some other television shows, too…but I had no idea what they were/that they even existed. I think she sensed that I was clueless this time, as she quickly explained, “they’re all about love”.
Love. We were sitting beside the window in our grandfather’s hospital room. There were at least 10 other family members in that room—all there to visit Grandpa.
Grandpa is not doing well.
Nearing the end of his life on this earth, actually.
In a month. In a year. The date doesn’t really matter. Death is imminent for all of us, but closer for him.
Love. Love brought us there. Love inspires us to help one another (even with impossible English assignments). Love prompts us to share our experiences with others.
The God that I believe in, is love. He is hope. He is merciful. And, when we lose Grandpa, He is going to be right there, with all of us.
“What about a Hallmark movie?!” My cousin gasped, excited. “I could write something like a Hallmark movie!”
“Yeah,” I smiled, agreeing with her, “that’s a good idea.”
Thank you, Dear Readers, for your presence here today. Your prayers, love and light have (and still do!) mean so much to me. May you feel loved and appreciated today and every day.
With Love & Gratitude,