One of these days I will get time to talk to Anne who comes into my Starbucks and works on her journal project. I would like to ask her about herself more than the quick questions I spout at her while making her latte or wiping the tables off. She said she has journals from 1985, that is 24 years ago, and that she wished she had kept them even longer. She is working on the process of condensing the bulk of a lifetime! I asked her what she intended to do with her it, and she said she didn’t know yet. I am interested in her project of reading and sorting through all her old journals because I picture myself doing that one day. I want to one day go back through my journals, and possibly blog entries, and reinvent myself as some conqueror and author of an autobiography.
Later though, I was thinking to myself, why would I want to write an autobiography? What would I want to share most about myself or be remembered for? How do I know that I would be a person worth remembering? What great contribution to mankind will I give? What pride that I imagine myself destined for greatness! Don’t we all want that? Yet why should I want to be remembered here on earth if our hope is on something eternal?
My favorite verse, Jeremiah 29:11 often misquoted:
“‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”
When my Dad first shared that verse of encouragement with me during one of my nights crying out of frustration during high school, I had a misconceived idea about what that “future” meant. I believed I should not lose hope in a God who would give me the future and success I wanted if I “honored him” in my work . I too often viewed Him as a genie-in-a-bottle rather than the mighty God whose plans are often not our own. The “future and a hope” the prophet Jeremiah told the Israelites foreshadowed the fulfillment of the promise that God would provide them with a hope for a future out of their despair-a future with Him. Our “hope” is spending eternity with Him. In that light, what does it matter how I am remembered or if my autobiography is read? Unless my story could bring one person to Christ…