From an article originally posted October 21, 2013…
Sally Lloyd Jones has a gift. She has a gift for beautifully telling the greatest story ever told. In my stack of devotional books I carry from one favorite perch to another, you will find the following: my Bible, Charles Spurgeon’s Morning by Morning, and Sally’s The Jesus Storybook Bible. A dear friend of mine arranged for me to meet this sweet gift. It was a day I will NEVER forget. Sally was just as I imagined her to be soft, loving, frank, and not afraid to enter the suffering of another.
This morning Jason was leaving me alone for a few hours, which is very difficult for him. I was so excited! As he was leaving, he brought me coffee, built a beautiful fire, and brought me my books. I was giddy with excitement to have some time alone. But I was missing Sally’s book. Jason immediately ran to get his copy from our office.
I’m going to share a quote that touched me this morning. It’s from the story: Let’s Go, in The Jesus Storybook Bible.
These words brought me to tears this morning. I wake up every morning such a terribly broken vessel. I feel inadequate in every aspect of my life. I’m helpless to keep myself alive, helpless to stop the cancer inside of me, helpless to change my story to one that remains to see my children grown. And in that place of brokenness, Jesus graciously chooses to use my story. Jesus gently walks very near to me giving me the strength for each new moment, each new hard, each new heartbreak. He redeems my heartache big and small, and He desires to hear the anguish of my heart.
What Jesus never does is push me. He never tells me to pick up my bootstraps and try harder. He never pushes me beyond what I am able to comprehend, he never leads me with gruff insults and abuses to my lack of trust and faith. Living with a godly man, it isn’t hard for me to see what a gentleman Jesus is. Much like my guy, he listens to my tears and has tears of his own. He protects me from the pain of today with the peace of His presence, He walks tenderly beside me as I struggle to understand the path lit before me.
Reading in Sally’s book this morning reminds me it isn’t my strength God can use in my life, it’s that I just need him a lot. My neediness qualifies me uniquely not my eloquence, or that I have it together, it’s my dependence.
Friends, the holiday season is coming. This book is a perfect gift. For grandchildren, children, college students, friends. This beautiful book is a gift to the heart of every age. Meeting Sally, I can see why God would use her writing in such a mighty way. She does not condescend to children, but greatly respects childhood. Her words are well spoken and honest. That is why her words are appropriate for all ages. She championed Jason and me in walking with cancer honestly before our children, where some would advocate us keeping them in the dark. Her visit last year came just in time. She was the grace that showed up. I’m so humbled to have met her. I love you Miss Sally, thank you for pointing me to Jesus this morning.
Who are the authors that remind you of the goodness provided for you in Jesus?