This week I'm beginning a new segment to my blog called, "Life Stories." As you may or may not know, I started this blog with the hope that it could be one small way of connecting people in the body of Christ as we do "life together" in our respective communities. I am fully aware that a web community cannot replace a real-life community of people who we see and communicate with regularly. However, it is my hope to highlight each week a "life story" of how God unites us in the gospel whether we live down the block from each other or 2000 miles away. Most of the time I will be contributing a story from my own life (sometimes serious, sometimes humorous), but I welcome you to email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or let me know on my blog if you have a short story that would encourage my readers that we are not alone as we run this race of life. So without further ado, here's the first "Life Story" ... Many of you know that last week my family went on a vacation to Olympia, Washington. One of the highlights from the week was walking down Pike Place Market where the first Starbucks was located. If you've never been there let me tell you that the atmosphere around the outskirts of the market is hoppin' ... tons of people--all kinds of people from every walk of life. So there we were headed towards Starbucks trying to walk in the midst of a flood of people and all of a sudden out of nowhere I hear someone say, "Are you Doug Wolter?" Needless to say, I was surprised. No, I was freaking out! But then I finally saw who it was that asked me the question. It was a former 6th grade student of mine that I taught back in Minnesota at a Christian school. She was now a senior in high school and was there in Seattle to visit her brother. As we talked, I was so encouraged to hear about her life and how she was doing. She said that she often thought about me and my family and wondered how we were doing. I encouraged her to keep with her singing as she was always very gifted in both singing and writing music even as an 11 year old girl. After a few minutes of conversation it was time to say good-bye, and so we kept walking through the sea of people on towards Starbucks.
Now I wonder ... has anything like this ever happened to you? For me it was somewhat surreal. But I thank God for his providence in putting this former student of mine in my path. Amongst all these people in a city 1000 miles away from me, I bumped into someone that God had blessed me to teach and now she was blessing me with her words of encouragement. Many times in these type of circumstances we say something like "It's a small world, isn't it?" But this time I wanted to add, "It's a small world, because we have a big God." A big God who loves to weave our lives together with others to encourage us and to remind us of the bigger story He's writing. The story of His glory. The story of His redemptive plan from creation to restoration. The story that continues no matter if you're in Seattle, Washington or LaGrange, Kentucky.