Friday, April 26, 2013

Writing Your Story -- April 26

How are you coming along with thoughts about writing your memories to leave for your family? I have talked with many people who say, "I really should write my memories down," but not many have begun.

You may say, "Who would be interested in my stories?"

People in your family would. And so would those who enjoy reading about real people. I have read many books written by people I did not know and have found great pleasure in finding out how they lived. For example, I read a book by Calvin Miller titled Life is Mostly Edges and was amused and encouraged by it. It told about his family when he was growing up, his marriage, and his children. There were stories of hardship as well as victory and even though Calvin Miller was not a personal friend, I enjoyed his book.

Mike Huckabee's A Simple Christmas: 12 Stories that Celebrate the Holiday Spirit contained stories of his childhood that were fun to read and I enjoyed his book, too.
I just love reading, though. If you are an avid reader like me, you probably would enjoy other people's stories. After all, what is a novel other than a book of made-up stories about imaginary people? I think probably most novels contain more truth than fiction as people draw from their memories to write the stories we love to read.

Today my story from my memories is one from my husband's early days, before we married. All these stories were ones he told me or that he used as sermon illustrations. This one took place in the "wino" district of Fort Worth, Texas. Please remember that my husband, Marvin Nobles, was introduced to me as "Charlie" Nobles. That's what I've called him all these years, so don't get confused and think I'm talking about some other man.

On Monday nights, during the time my husband was beginning his studies in theology at Decatur Baptist College, he and several other young preachers made a habit of going down into the "wino" section of Fort Worth to the rescue mission. They would stand on the corner and preach as they invited people to come in. If the desperate people on the street went in and listened to a preacher for about half an hour, they were given a bean sandwich and a bed for the night. Many of the homeless men and women on the street went into the Rescue Mission for the little bit of food and warmth, and they endured the preaching to get it.

One night as Charlie preached on the street and invited people into the mission, he held a little Gideon New Testament in his hand. After he finished, one of the men came to him and said, "I sure wish I had a Bible like that. If I just had something to read, I think it would help me."

Charlie had always been a giver, so he handed the little Bible to the man. He noticed that the man left quickly after that and went across the street, rather than going into the mission for the night. He watched as the man entered a bar. He thought "I'm going to follow him and see what he does."

Charlie noticed, as he entered the bar, that the bartender was holding the Gideon New Testament in his hands. The man had traded it to him for a drink. 

My husband continued to be a giver. To this day, he loves to help others. I don't think that little New Testament helped the wino very much, but perhaps the bartender read it. We'll never know for sure.


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