I am almost embarrassed to admit that as I type this, I cannot remember how I first met today’s guest blogger, Owie Burns. But make no mistake, Owie is one of my favorite people, and one of my closest and dearest friends. In the last couple of years, we have seen each other through laughter and tears, trials and victories, heartbreaks and joyful days…you get the point. :)
When I thought of asking Owie to write a blog post, the topic to came to mind was exactly this one: Everybody has a different story. The reason behind this is that I felt that Owie’s life proved this statement to be true. As a single mom (to an adorable boy named Kristo) and a media missionary, she is no ordinary single woman. I’ll let her tell you her story:
Everybody has a different story.
I know, it isn’t rocket science and you’ve probably heard that line a gazillion times, but reality is – we always need to be reminded. Otherwise, we tend to look at other people’s stories and oh-so-wish that our story would be a like a fairy tale just like as theirs OR we tend to look at a list of the usual steps or procedures or formulas that most people say work – and we stick to them as if they were THE ultimate rules of life.
For instance, we try to put the whole dating process in a box, following step 1 through step 94 before we can really say it’s God’s will. We’ve gotten so used to formulas when it comes to relationships – even our relationship with the Lord! We see the lives of those who’ve walked ahead of us, and we so try our best (even if we don’t admit it) to follow the exact same path they’ve taken and we’ve dreamt for their stories to be our own.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against processes and formulas and steps and all that. I’m also not saying that you should just go for it, do whatever feels right, etc. It’s just that sometimes we’re too focused on getting from one point to another according to other peoples’ standards and rules and we don’t give God enough room to move anymore in our lives – because, well, we’ve put everything (even God) in a box.
One of the books I’ve recently read and thoroughly enjoyed is Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. Now that’s a book that clearly shows you that everyone has a different story. Period. Here’s one of the parts that struck me most:
Ravi Zacharias says that what the heart is really longing to do is worship, to stand in awe of a God we don’t understand and can’t explain.
It comforts me to think that if we are created beings, the thing that created us would have to be greater than us, so much greater, in fact, that we would not be able to understand it. It would have to be greater than the facts of our reality, and so it would seem to us, looking out from within our reality, that it would contradict reason. But reason itself would suggest it would have to be greater than reality, or it would not be reasonable.
When we worship God we worship a Being our life experience does not give us the tools with which to understand. If we could, God would not inspire awe.
If I may add to that, if our stories are so predictable, it robs us the chance of being in awe of God.
To explain my point, allow me to share a bit of my story.
I thought my story would be something like: I meet ‘the one’ and we become friends, we go out on a bunch of group dates, then when my friends have gotten to know him well enough, he’ll tell me he likes me, and we’ll finally go out exclusively. After some time he’ll propose, and then eventually we’ll get married and have our first kiss at the altar. It sounded so right, but…
…it isn’t my story.
My fairy tale didn’t turn out that way. I went to a gig and bumped into someone I’ve casually known for six years. We ended up talking all night and he said we should grab coffee some time the week after. Four days later we went out for dinner, and after dinner I just knew he was “the one”. And by the time we were having dessert he said it out of the blue, he said “This is it. You’re the one!” and just like that, we knew and we decided to commit to love each other according to the Bible’s standards.
My son who wasn’t at all open to me having a relationship instantly fell in love with my boyfriend! Eighteen days later he proposed and in about two months we’re getting married! So it’s nothing like what I thought it would be, but since the day we decided, God’s been confirming and reminding us both that these were those secret wishes we individually asked for. And when we talked about it, we realized that our story fits our personalities perfectly. Allowing God to move just left us and everyone around us in awe.
Everyone has a different story because we are all different. The one thing that remains constant is this: as long as God writes the story, you can expect it to be beautiful and full of surprises!
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Note from Liz: When Owie called me to say that she and Rommel were getting married, I was beyond thrilled! God had given her a good man who loves her and her son, and above all, loves God. Whenever I see them together, I marvel at this match that God had created. She’s so right…every story is different, but every story written by God is awesome indeed!
Owie Burns is a Media Missionary for The Edge Media, where she constantly bugs their volunteer graphic artists and writers about their deadlines for the youth devotional Word 4U Today. She is mom to ultra-inquisitive Kristo who’s 5 years old, and in a little over two months, she will be Mrs. Owie dela Cruz! She normally posts stories about her son at http://mommyowie.wordpress.com but since she got engaged, she’s also been posting on their love story-wedding site http://www.owiebarns.com.
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