Sunday, September 02, 2007

Taking it to the streets

This photo was taken at a recent one-day retreat with my dear friend Katie. We went to the lake house of a friend of hers to write, eat, talk, and enjoy the beauty of Lake Norman. Glorious day. Great snacks. Lots of writing and talking and silence and contemplation in one of the most peaceful homes I have ever entered.


Tonight I went to Sonic alone for dinner. I had just dropped Kristiana off for a church event and drove over to my favorite fast food place for dinner for one. While I waited for my burger, tater tots, and strawberry limeade to be prepared, I pulled out my journal to write down a few thoughts. When my server arrived at the car (Sonic is a drive-in place where the food is delivered to your car. Fun!) and saw my journal laid out in my lap, she asked what I was doing. I told her I was writing in my journal. She asked a few questions about the journal and about me, and then she shared with me that she takes photos and writes song lyrics as her creative outlet. She said that she had never seen anyone journal there at the restaurant. She also said that I was "a big inspiration" to her.

As she walked away from the car, I offered up a quick prayer of thanks to God for that opportunity to meet and befriend that young woman. Those brief words we shared made that 1,000 calorie meal worth the extra sit-ups, push-ups, and bicep curls I will have to do this week.

Before I left, I got out of the car to throw away my garbage. I gave her my card (with my phone number, email address, and blog address) and told her that if she ever wanted to talk or wanted anyone to pray with her, she should call me. I also told her that I will pray for her this year with her school (she's in the tenth grade at a local high school), her job, and her song writing. The look on her face was one of genuine surprise that I would speak to her so openly.

I encourage all of us to journal in public. To take our words to the streets. You never know when it will give you the opportunity to share something with someone, to be an encouragement to someone, or to jot down some info about someone so that you can pray for them in the future.

I plan to keep young Ashley in my prayers for a long time to come.


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Amy said...


I got your comments this morning on my blog. Another common bond: My right food is always flaky and has athlete's foot. I've had it for over 20 years! I have a lovely left foot (ha).

I loved this piece about public journaling. I'm not a skier, but I like ski resorts, so I take my son and his friends every year to a place here in Virginia. People look at me very oddly as they see me sitting in the ski lodge writing in my journal. It's become a tradition for me.

Keep writing and journaling!


Shelby said...

I have yet to journal anywhere but right here in my room.. interesting.. I'm now challenged.

Andrew said...

Gail, you are doing so well at blogging! I am proud of you.

Keep going!

Our Family of Five said...

Hi, I just stopped by from another blog and thought I would say that I love your blog and hope to visit again. I love your writing style. I can't wait to read some of your archives! :)