By Conference Minister Diane Weible
It takes a lot of courage to tell your story. Many times it feels a lot safer to keep it to yourself. Because, when you find the courage to tell your story, you never know how it will be heard. You hope the person hearing your story will hear your truth and will hold your story as the sacred telling it is.
But, the truth is, many times that sacred story is twisted or ignored or denied. That story is not safe in the hands of the one who receives it. You may be told it could not possibly have happened the way you say. You may be told that you are lying. You may be questioned about how it was so long ago, you must have another reason for telling it now. You may not receive any response at all. The person you thought you could trust may just look at you or smile a little and then go on as if you have said nothing.
Is it worth the risk? Isn’t it better to just keep that story to yourself where it is protected and safe with the one person who knows it happened exactly as you told it? Because the truth is that when a story impacts you, you may not remember the small details but you remember what happened—with vivid clarity—no matter how many years have passed and no matter how someone might try to tell you that there is no way you could remember some things and not others.
So, is it worth the risk? Maybe. Maybe not. Only you can answer that question for yourself.
But, if you have the courage to tell your truth, please know that I will listen and I will hold your sacred story with love and in a protective embrace. And know that there are many others who will offer the same. After all, isn’t that what it means to be part of God’s community of love?