Thursday, October 18, 2012

Don’t Forget Your Memories! plus: Blog a book

Are you a blogger?
Nina Amir can tell you how to
in her new book,
How to Blog a Book:
Write, Publish, and Promote Your Work
One Post at a Time.

Click here for a book review by Jodi Webb,
Nina’s blog tour dates, and a book giveaway.

“The Sacred Act of Remembering”

“It’s amazing how quickly we can forget our own stories,” writes Jena Nardella.

“We are inundated with the immediate pressures of today….  But how much time do we spend considering where we have come from?” she asks.

“Dan, Charlie, Matt, Steve, and I sat together … and reflected on the stories of where we have come from. It has been painful, exhilarating, disappointing, beautiful—all of it.

“We sat there, circled together … and affirmed that we are blessed to be a part of such a story.

“And then we took the great leap to dream about where we are going next.… But we could not have done that until we had remembered where we had come from. Our stories can teach us, time and time again.” (by Jena Nardella at Storyline; emphasis mine)

“Many churches have forgotten the premium
that the historic Judeo-Christian tradition
placed on remembrance
and recalling the right things.
The ‘great sin’ of the Old Testament
was forgetfulness
(at least it is the most recurrent offense).
Remember’ is the most frequent command
in the Old Testament.”

(Clapham Memo, January 19, 2007, “Back and Forth,”
by Mike Metzger; emphasis mine)

What stories have you forgotten?

Your stories are part of a much bigger story than you might think.

What stories do you need to remember?

“May you be as blessed as we were
in the important and
sacred act of remembering.” 
(Jena Nardella in Storyline; emphasis mine)


  1. I think this is a most compelling topic, and I hope people will comment on it. Remembering can be a great gift and also a great curse. Memories can haunt us and pull us away from the present, and they can also make us deeply grateful for all the good we've received. One of the gifts for me in writing my memoir is that it helped me put my most painful memories to rest. By publishing them, I have given them wings on which to fly and stay alive, without my having to personally relive them daily. I could write lots about my happy memories, too, but those are generally less interesting for others to read. The Bible is about times of pestilence and suffering AND triumph and survival. I suppose we need to remember it all . . . that life was difficult, and that we overcame and grew and thereby remained good in the eyes of God. To remember only the pain, or only the joy, would be incomplete. We need to remember it all, as a package, because life is all of it. Pain and loss, healing and joy. We LEARN by remembering!!! So I think the message in the Bible, "Remember", also means, "Don't let the suffering, nor what was gained and learned from it, be wasted. Learn. Remember what we've learned."

    1. Oh, Samantha, I've been thinking for several days about your wise, insightful comment. It has brought so many thoughts to mind.... I wonder if I should write another blog post --- you've given me so much to ponder. THANK YOU for sharing this message, Samantha, and for sharing your life with us.

      I think I will write an additional blog post....


  2. Thank you so much for this comment. I have been struggling to start my memoir, and it's coming, though at times it's like pulling out an ingrown toenail. I know it has to happen, because remembering the hard times by writing about them helps me grow, and actually figure out what it was that happened. I don't want all these lessons to be wasted. Yet, sometimes the pain holds me back from really committing all of me to the task. Thanks for the encouragement.

    1. Hi, sweet Rachel. I hope you got my earlier e-mail. I, too, have found it overwhelming to write about some of the things that are painful. I told you about that in the e-mail, and I think there's a blog post here about one of them, the Tom Durr story. You are correct: writing does help us figure out what happened and helps us not to waste it. In my memoir, Grandma's Letters from Africa, I included a Chuck Swindoll quote that God does not waste our suffering, and I clung to that thought while I was going through that excruciating time. Give yourself plenty of time to sort through your experience, dear Rachel, and for now pin down some of the "lighter" parts of the experience -- the 5 senses surounding the experience, for example. Keep me posted if I can be of help. You can do this, girl!