Reader Question: Did you do that on purpose?

 

©iStock.com/VCT Style

©iStock.com/VCT Style

Multiple readers have asked me this. The question usually goes something like this: “It meant so much to me to see x in real life represented by y in the book. Did you do that on purpose?”

When I was little, my mom was fond of telling me, “Better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you a fool, than to open it and remove all doubt.” (I must have needed this advice a lot since I recall her saying it often.) This may be one of those cases where I’d be better off if I just smiled politely and let people think what they choose. But the truth is that I’m not smart enough to put together all the connections that people give me credit for. However—and this is a wonderful however—Someone is.

I think one reason that Jesus used parables so often was that, rather than communicating facts, parables illustrate principles. But the details of how a principle works itself out in any individual’s life may differ. As a result, the specific details of the parable that will be meaningful to someone may vary. Sometimes details that mean nothing to one person can have powerful significance to another.

Call me a dreamer, but I don’t think the inclusion of such details in Chris’s story was a happy accident. I think they were private messages from God to a particular person — little love notes, if you will. He just borrowed my keyboard to send the letter.

©iStock.com/ JTeffects

©iStock.com/ JTeffects

So if you find something in a parable (whether The Race or another) that warms your heart in that special way that only a personal message from a very special someone can, lift your eyes toward heaven and thank the only One that knows you well enough to send you a private message through a public medium. It’s one of the many ways He uses to communicate His love for you.

By the way, God has even managed to use my own manuscript to send me a couple of messages … in the future, no less! I’ll tell you about my favorite in the next post.

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