doing what we’re meant to do

It’s not always clear (I’m talking Big Picture here) what we are supposed to be doing with our lives. With so many demands for our time (and so many of them GOOD), how do we choose? I guess that’s part of what continues to draw me into God’s Word over and over again. Years ago while enduring a painful season of grief and loss, I turned to the bible for answers. As part of the healing process, God gave me a tender heart towards women seeking answers and comfort in their own places of sorrow. He gave me a passion for making the very most of life along with the sharp awareness that our days here on Earth are numbered.

It was early in this journey (6+ years ago) that I created a special journal for my grandma.  I filled it with questions I wanted answered (What was it like when she first fell in love?  When and how did she first learn to drive?  What was her early marriage like?  What did she remember about her own grandparents?) and told her I would come looking for it after she was gone.

Guess what I went looking for and finally found over the weekend?!!!

my journal

Words cannot even begin to describe how much this book means to me. To see Grandma’s handwriting, to learn things about her I have never known. (For example, she never learned how to ride a bike… I NEVER KNEW THAT!)


You can only imagine how incredibly special it was to read her words aloud to my grandpa – her husband of 65 years. He offered additional details, even some of his own stories. It made me wish SO BADLY she would have answered all of the questions, not just a handful.

I talk OFTEN at the faithbooking crops about the importance of our words and stories. Each one of us has an important opportunity to create and leave tangible remembrances of our lives. A legacy. We have the opportunity to give our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren (and beyond) a glimpse into their heritage that extends well beyond mere images. You see, in reading Grandma’s journal I also found pieces of myself.

grandmas advice

Those connections help define a family and sense of identity. It feels even more important now that I’m on the receiving end of the journal. So much so, that I am going to make one (each) for Tony and myself to pass along to our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and beyond.

And yes – I know I have shared the song below at least a million times but it was playing in the background as I was working on these images, serving as a powerful reminder. I just had to share it again.

If you want to leave your mark in this way, don’t put it off!  None of us has a clue as to what tomorrow might bring (Proverbs 27:1).

Renee - March 12, 2012 - 2:56 pm

LOVE this Tina! I too gave my parents books to fill out a number of years ago. Sadly my mom passed away unexpectedly and did not get the chance to fill it out like I wished she would have. Moving forward, I know that life is short and you just NEVER know when it is your time.

After that, I knew I needed to go out and buy books for both Aaron and I to fill out (something we need to be more diligent about doing). I am excited to see your list of questions though…thank you for this important reminder.

And I absolutely LOVE your grandmother’s quote about perspective and rose bushes! SO true!

Leslie Schiltgen - March 13, 2012 - 9:13 am

That is the greatest gift ever Tina! I started writing a journal to my daughter when she was five months old. Every day I write something in there about her day, what she did, how I feel, how she was. I am hoping that when she is 18 she will love it and appreciate all the memories and thoughts I had.

Tina - March 13, 2012 - 10:20 am

That is AWESOME, Leslie! She is sure to treasure it.

Tina - March 13, 2012 - 10:23 am

I’m sorry to hear your mom never had the chance to fill out her book. That sort of thing gives me a sense of urgency about my own. I’ll try to have the questions up within the week, Renee!

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