Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

What’s Your Story?


So? How was your Easter?

Did your entire family get to be together? We were missing #1 and DIL, but we had a fantastic day anyway. Many thanks to Brother Jeffrey, who does most of the work for the family, feeding the calves, judging when they’re just ready and hauling them to turn into steaks. YUMMERS! 

The day started early, early, fixing strawberries and deviled eggs. (The eggs were a big hit before we were even ready for dinner. LOL)

As usual, Sunday School and church were wonderful. In SS we’re about to attack Phillipians 3. The teacher in that class is fantastic. He loves God’s word and doesn’t just whip through the Book. Instead, he studies it word by word, sharing with us the very marrow of the word.

Then worship service. The place was teeming with people. (Ever notice how so many people remember Easter is a day to worship, even if they are too busy the rest of the year? PTL!) This is the church where I grew up, but there were so many people I didn’t know! What a wonderful day!

One of my favorite things about worshiping with this group of Christians is that we know to expect the unexpected. As usual, we had a surprise yesterday.

I worked hard not to sob out loud (I didn’t want to frighten Dad and my long time friend, Trudy) as we saw Cardboard Testimonies.

I wanted to write a few down, but I couldn’t think about pen and paper as I read the stark truth of the statements on the faces of people I love. I can’t see when my mascara is burning in my eyes, so these aren’t direct quotes. They’re just the best I can remember. 

Changed by the Master 

Each person testifying walked onto the stage, holding a large piece of cardboard, which they held up for everyone to read, then flipped to the back. One said, “A Mess.” She flipped it and the back said, “God’s mess.”

A woman walked to the middle and lifted a sign that said, “My husband died.” She turned it to the other side. “We’ll be together again in glory.”  

Another woman’s said, “Alcoholic.” She flipped it to, “Sober in Christ, 28 years.”

“Convicted felon/Free in Christ.”

“Orphaned by alcoholism/Daughter of the King.”     

“People pleaser/becoming a God pleaser.”

“Devastated by divorce,” made me cry so hard I missed what was on the back.

On of my favorite people in the world was one of the first testimonies. After all the others, I’d forgotten exactly what hers said, but she put it on Facebook. “I was lost in despair…..with the Grace of God now I’m Hopeful with Promise.”

Then on FB she asked, “What’s your story?”

Put yourself in their place. Would you put your worst failure out there for everyone to see? Could you do it?  

“Fearful of dying/Secure beneath His wing.”

“Seeking approval from the world/The Lord is my righteousness.”

Have you been changed by the master? What’s your story?

Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

11 thoughts on “What’s Your Story?

  1. On the back of “Devastated by divorce’, I put ‘Joyful in Jesus’

    Amazing how God’s Grace can change lives so much.

    • That’s perfect, Deb. He’s so good!
      I really appreciate the way our church leadership looks to God to work through them–which blesses the rest of us. I’ll always remember our worship service on Resurrection Sunday 2011 as being a special time in the presence of the Lord.
      Thank you for being part of it.

  2. Deb, God can do amazing things! But, you must take some of the credit too.
    You have allowed God to work in your life.

    We all got together and had a great time! We missed Ryan and Amber, but we had lots of food and fun!
    LY both

    • I’m glad y’all had time to get together, #4. And you’re right. For God to work in someone’s life, they have to LET Him. Deb’s a fantastic example for the rest of us.

  3. I almost forgot, Mama would be proud!

    • You are so right ~ your Mama would be proud of all of you! She did a wonderful job of raising all of you to love the Lord & it shows! Gorgeous kids with beautiful hearts ~ what a tribute to Mary Sue 🙂

      • Thanks, Sharon! She did do a great job–with a little help from Daddy. And I’ll always be glad for it.
        So glad you came by and said hi.

        • A good Mama & Daddy are essential to a wonderful Christian family! And it was always very apparent how very much they loved each other. I still can see you writing their love story in book form one day!

          • Wow. I don’t know if I’d be able to do that. Kind of like writing about the wreck–their love was so intense it makes me nearly cry to think about it.
            But you never know. 🙂

  4. This is a perfect example that people need to realize how our lives influence the people around us. You are right that your mother would be proud of everyone of you. But look at the lives she affected with her parenting and zest for life. Your friends still comment on it and all of your family still live it. Her values are still alive today living through the people who knew her. What an awesome task we have to live OUR lives so we can leave behind our mark on the people around us. We can not leave out your dad because without the anchor point the the family could have drifted apart. Susan you have no idea how some of your little articles affect people. When I am not having a good day I can read some of these stories and it puts a smile on my face. Thank you.

    • What a nice thing to say, Joe. You’ve made my day!
      Mom was an influence on lots of people we didn’t know about until after her death.
      I’m glad you visit me here. Say hello again when you’re back.
      And thanks for the kind words!

I'm so glad you dropped by my Small Town World! Hope you'll leave a comment. I really enjoy hearing from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s