I’ve been doing some freelance writing this year for Waco Today. It’s nothing too spectacular, they’re always pretty straight forward pieces, but it’s a lot of fun and it’s great extra income. Plus it keeps me doing what I love, which is telling stories. Yesterday I was driving home from doing an interview for a story I’m working on, and as I was driving I started having this revelation of why I love what I do.
I love writing for magazines like Waco Today, because most often the stories are less hard news oriented and more feature-esque. And in a feature story, you’re normally highlighting something unique about a person or organization — some accomplishment, or some special skill, talent or gift. So I find that I really enjoy doing interviews for these stories, because most of the time I’m getting to talk to someone about the thing they love the most. That one thing that makes them come alive, that they could spend their entire lives doing and never grow weary of it.
And there’s something about talking to someone who has passion in their voice. It just rubs off on you. I have no desire to own a restaurant or sing in a barbershop quartet. I have never wanted to be a CEO or a governor. I wouldn’t dream of becoming an American Gladiator or the captain of a roller derby team. (Well OK, I might think about trying those two)
I’ve sat across a table from all of these people, though, and I’ve listened to the sounds of their souls pour out into a recorder — the stories from the purest places of hearts that I’ll somehow try to retell just as raw and beautifully as they made it sound the first time. And it doesn’t matter what they’re talking about, if I can feel the passion in the voice of someone who’s living out what they were made for, my heart beats a little faster. Maybe some of that is the fact that I know somehow their purpose is colliding with mine every time I get to tell one of their stories.
When I see people who know who they are operating in their giftings, I see a little glimpse of heaven come out of them. Because even if they don’t realize it, when someone does something out of a God-given place of giftedness, they are unlocking some small piece of heaven that they’ve been given authority over and access to on earth.
This is true of the culinary mastermind, who knows the glory of the wedding feast and can give us enough taste to satisfy our appetites for now.
It’s true of the vocalist who opens his mouth and somehow there’s a choir of angels singing from this one set of vocal chords.
It’s true in the strategic mind of a CEO who knows that heaven is anything but ordinary and every bit of extravagantly, intricately designed. And it’s true of the governor who hates injustice and is for the people, who values education and despises wastefulness because he knows the stewarding of such things will determine the longevity of the people and place he’s been given authority over.
It’s true of the gladiator and the rollergirl, who know the true meaning of running a race with endurance and disciplining yourself for the greater things.
When God makes us he puts some piece of himself inside of us that he intends for us to share with the rest of his children. I’ve heard it said before that our job is to open a window so that people can hear the sound of their true home.
What window do you open? What’s been put in you that gives you authority to access a special part of heaven — the part that only you have the keys to?
I think my window is the window to his goodness. I’m a storyteller. Do you know what happens when we tell stories? We remember what’s already happened. We cherish and we retell of the deeds of God because we need a reminder to propel us forward.
And if I retell of his deeds then it has to equate to revealing his goodness, because he is the author of all that is good. Every good thing comes from him. Every. Good. Thing.
So I keep letting strangers pour out their hearts to me, and I let their passion ignite my passion because this is how we move things in the spirit. And with every story told, the window that unleashes his goodness opens wider, and wider, and wider.
That’s my window. What’s yours?