Tell me a story about when you came out of hiding.
Here's my story:
I came out of hiding today, when I finally chose to fully invest myself in the calling which is at the ground-level of every role I enact in my life: I am a storycatcher. There is nothing that thrills me more than to be in the presence of human beings sharing their personal stories with one another. There is nothing that makes me feel more alive than asking generous questions and listening to the stories they elicit.
I've been aware of this fact of myself more and more over the past several years, but on the whole I've been private about it. My public role as a church pastor has been a wonderful place to live out of this fact and to use the skills I've been developing as a spiritual director and storycatcher.
Even so, I've wanted more. I've wanted opportunities beyond the church community, to hear the stories of people who stay--by their own choice or because they've felt rejected--outside of churches.
I started working on this website a year ago, and it has been published online for at least nine months. But it has not been visible, and I have hesitated to make it so. I worried about what people would think. I worried that it wasn't good enough yet. I worried that I didn't really know what I was doing with web-design. I worried about how being visible in this way would change my life. I did nothing for nine months, except, I suppose, incubate the dream of offering myself as a storycatcher in more expansive ways.
Then COVID-19 happened (how many of our stories, collectively, will begin anew with those words?). As a pastor, I've been challenged to go online with the messages and means of communicating my religious tradition and keeping the congregation connected. I've learned to create and post Sunday worship services, I've learned to host Zoom meetings. Even so, I've resisted birthing this website and the offering of my gifts that it represents, because I've resisted the truth that the world has changed forever.
Until today. Today, I accepted and embraced the reality of my world, post-COVID-19, and my place in it. I accepted that human beings need to connect with each other at story-level, that personal storytelling is not limited by the need to meet in-person, and that I am one of the people who is called to create spaces where story connections happen.
So: I offer you Story Journey. I hope you will contact me to engage in the beauty and wonder of story sharing, to experience the transformative effects of going on your own Story Journey. May this newly birthed web site open doorways for your exploration of your own life and the world.