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betsy@sparklinghope.net
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My Daddy Parables

 

I once played an ice-breaker game where we were challenged to describe ourselves in three words. I chose "Daddy's Storytelling Princess." The "Daddy Princess" part is because I was a Daddy's girl who preferred my father's lap to any other chair; got up early to eat sardines with just him (because mommy didn't like the smell of them); and wrote an endless list of questions about the Bible in the notebook he gave me. When I filled a page, he'd take me out for breakfast to try and answer them. 

 

As I grew up, I discovered that God, the Father that Jesus came to share with us, is like that too. He's always available and endlessly affectionate. He's ready to have "Special Time with Just You"  every morning (or any other time). He wants us to discover the Bible and He's unafraid of questions. His lap is always open. I transferred my deepest affections to Him to be His "Daddy's Girl" forever.

 

The "Storytelling" part started as soon as I could talk, when I began entertaining my parents with the adventures of my imaginary grown-up daughter who lived in South Africa. Then I drafted my mother to write down my stories because I couldn't write yet. Her first dictation assignment involved mice trying to shop in a grocery store. Then I learned to write, and I filled page after page after page in the back of that Bible-questions-for-breakfast-with-Daddy notebook with the adventures of a red-haired little girl name Abigail whose father was fighting in the American Civil War. My greatest fear was that someone else would have the same idea, write my novel and publish it first.

 

It took a long time to discover that God was as interested in the storytelling part of my notebook as in the Bible questions section, and that I could meet Him in both places. The only stories I met Jesus in, outside of Bible stories, were the stories of Aslan in "Narnia."  Author C.S. Lewis had dared to ask a question no one else I knew had dared to ask, let alone answer: If I were a child and Jesus a lion, and I met Him in another world, what would He say to me? What would I say to Him? What would we do together? The Lord had met him in his imagination and blessed the world. I wish C.S. Lewis had written 100 more of these books because I didn't want them to end!

 

But over time I discovered that the Lion I loved had come back through the wardrobe and that He lived on my side, in my world, very much alive. He was revealed between the two leather covers of my Bible, but He was not trapped in them. He was still giving kisses and performing miracles and telling stories, even now, in this moment. If I risked the impossible to obey Him, He pulled through for me. If I told the stories of what He had done for me, He used them to change people's lives.

 

So He began to take over as the Hero in all my stories. He began to bleed through every page of my notebook. The stories, songs, poems and meditations on my website were created over many years in the secret place with Jesus. They are my Special Things with Daddy, like sardines early in the morning before mommy wakes up. I set up this blog to make them available to God's children everywhere.

 

You can use these stories in your private devotions or as a launching place for prayer. You can use them for readings and dramatic recitations in church. You can read them to your children for "family devotions" or over breakfast. You can share them with a Sunday School class or quote them in a sermon or email them to a friend. 

 

But most of all, I hope my stories will make you turn to Jesus and say "Hi" and find Him today in your own story. He's the sparkliest Hero I've ever known and I know He's waiting for you!

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You can visit Elizabeth  Ellynshaw's website here: http://daddyparables.press/   A good place to start is her Library Directory, where you can see everything she's posted so far, organized by genre and title. You can browse by category or see her most recent posts under the Home Page. You can also subscribe to receive her posts through your email.

 

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