Thursday, December 15, 2005

LS: Welcome Guest

This Advent week in my faith fellowship, we're focusing on welcoming others. It's so easy to focus our thoughts on God's extravagant welcome to us--sinners who are soiled and odorous from our sojourn in the landfill of our lives. It's easy to imagine us, roadweary, bruised and bloody and cold, crawling up to the door of the bridegroom's warm cottage, its golden light thawing the darkness and ice that surrounds our heart. It's easy to imagine the rough wooden door being swung wide, and there he stands. He knew we'd be coming, and not only does he throw open the door, our bridegroom runs down the path, into the frigid darkness, takes us in his arms and warms us, wiping our brow with his white shawl as he carries us inside.

But not only are we cold and dirty and foul-smelling, perhaps we are mentally challenged, perhaps we talk too much, think we know it all. Perhaps we sing off key during the singing and get into his "space" and don't know when it's time to go home. Perhaps we don't make enough money to drive anything but an old Caravan, or we have to take the bus. Perhaps we have physically challenged children who take up most of our time so we can't contribute to VBS or Sunday School. Perhaps we have a different color skin. Perhaps we live under a bridge. Perhaps we're working three jobs just to pay the electric bill and we're still despised because we're poor. Perhaps we're obese. Perhaps we're still wearing a mullet after all these years. Perhaps our father was just a plumber. Perhaps no one would like us if they knew who we really were.

God welcomes us in any state we come, but I know I often hope that the people who come in my door, and the door of my church, will be just like me.

Who will we welcome this Advent? Who will we welcome in our writing? If we're "writing what we know" and most of our characters are just like us, maybe it's time to step out and be a little like God, to welcome within the world we create on a page those who would make us uncomfortable otherwise. Perhaps it's time to step out of our comfort zone, not just in our writing, but in where our feet will go as well. Imagine not only what that would do for our books but for our lives? Oh, the stories we'd surely tell!

Lisa Samson
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At 1:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At 5:16 PM, Blogger upwords said...


As always, you challenge me. :::sigh::: Off to think on this some more.
Mary G.

At 11:06 PM, Blogger Bonnie S. Calhoun said...

That's the kind of church I go to. We minister to what other churches call "the dregs of society". So consequently a lot of our people are first generation christians. It can be very daunting at times and requires a lot of prayer.

At 12:40 AM, Blogger Dineen A. Miller said...

Love the character insight. I'm in that sitation now with a current WIP. The characters are so strong and so different from me that they overwhelm me at times. I know that's God.


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