When Stories Echo


Outside the movie theater that day, they hand out oversized buttons with these words.  A clever catch phrase soon to have us rolling with hilarious, tear-spilling over, side-holding, cracking up laughter… every… time… we… recall… the actor’s sort of elderly curmudgeon character-of-an-uncle… Jerry Lewisstyle delivery…

You had to be there.

Hear the intonation.

The upturned way just that one word “story” rose into a kooky sing-songy question.

I don’t remember the name of the movie.  Can’t really name the actors or what that question had to do with anything.

     I only remember… we couldn’t stop laughing.

My 40-something parents… their best friends… their daughter     (our best friend)… and my sister and I…

So many days and months after that…it would only take some ordinary moment to strike a note from that movie… and wham…light the silliness-fuse for someone to execute an absolutely perfect, every nuance down, full-out imitation that never failed to send us into gales upon whoops again!

“So…what’s your…story?”

It was one of those repeating scenes of the oh what a character every family seems to have… like the classically tender-funny comic ethnic mama who informs her grown children oh so matter of factly… “Oh, you don’t really care about me, I’m going to just put my head in the oven and get myself out of your way…so be sure and call Rose when you plan my funeral…and don’t forget Uncle Bob is hard of hearing… ”

🙂  You know…the one where the character is both endearing and nutsy…and you just want to hug ‘em or toss em’… all… in… one… fell… swoop!

🙂  One that is wondrously, marvelously, cleverly able to engrave your heart with indelible word or phrase.

🙂  Captures their story in that one single charming performance.

🙂  And bubbles over you with joy.

That memory has been one of many echoes lately of my mom and dad…our friends…

Reminding me of their stories…still in my heart.

And ringing out that question, a bit more seriously, in me.

So …what’s MY story?

What story is my life telling?

And…no children of my own…who is reading it?

To some of my closest friends and their children… I think I’ve often been the “book aunt” who delights in sharing great books on all occasions.

Or the “movie-or-old-TV-show-lovin’ lady” who is always taping or buying or sharing  THE BEST with a “you’re just going to love this!”

But as the hours and days, weeks and years roll by like calendar pages whipping off across the screen of an old movie, whizzing us through time… I wonder.

What is the story you are writing in and through me, Father?

I know a few things that I want written there.

His heart follower.



New chapters of joy…music…light…

Someone who is reading it…


More clear understanding about what ways my story is making…or could be making…        a difference. Wisdom and direction for His dream in me…

Like the moving story I heard yesterday… of an 1860 – 1947  man whose life is still read in the huge, handwritten ledger book recorded and kept in a beyond-words-beautiful English cemetery.  One whose words even now reverberate to new generations of the faith-filled…


I love the closing line I heard                                                                                                    on one of my favorite programs again today…                                                             one visiting character to a regular one:                                                                            There are certain people who change your life.                                                             I will always remember you…

Just as I remember…  My mom…

Grabbing a pen and paper, bending down by the TV to write down an address for some sort of poetry or prose contest on a game or talk show…

Confiding…sort of shyly…how she always dreamed of being a writer…

Maybe even whispering that dream into me in that very moment.

I don’t know what words she sent out or where she sent them that day.

As far as I ever heard, she never had anything published.

But I did see her writing lengthy, beautiful, heartfelt letters into the night… to her England pen pal… over thirty-something years.

Sending out lovely long notes with every Christmas or birthday or anniversary card…year after year.

Personalized, handwritten, keep-in-touch kinds of messages…oh so much more than the sometimes xeroxed news enclosed today…

And as I remember that, I hear again the words of a long-time friend of hers from the day we said “Adieu…until we see you again, Mom…”

I have carried one of your mom’s last letters to me for so many years,” she tells me that evening, softly.  “I never told her how much it meant to me and to [her husband]…it changed our thinking…”

I think again of how those words touched me deeply…made me wish Mom could have heard her say them.

She never knew, Lord, I whispered sadly.  And I know she always wondered.

Just one of the many ways her story sang, as heart-stirring a note as ever her violin did in her growing up years…

And, I see now…made her truly…a writer.

Two thoughts whisper in me —

She knows now.    

There are certain people, who change your life…


So…what’s my story?

And those being written around me… with me?

Will they echo?

O Lord, make it so.

Hand writing on parchment with a golden pen Stock Photo - 5601663

©  Pam Depoyan


Linking with:

On Your Heart Tuesdays,

WLWW, Walk with Him Wednesday,

Thought Provoking Thursday,

The Beauty in His Grip


Stock Photos:

About Pam@Writing...Apples of Gold

I love to hear your thoughts, even chat back and forth amongst comments.Won't you join the conversation? :) ..................................................................................................................... May my stories refresh you, like a whisper from our Father's Heart !
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16 Responses to When Stories Echo

  1. lolitavalle says:

    Surely, Pam…… it echoes so strongly and definitely here at my side of the globe. Ringing, singing, sighing and spilling over in my heart….. like apples of gold, like fresh fountain in the dessert, like food for the soul.

    I love how you write your life, poetry, prose to the Father’s dreamed of plans for you, His singing over you and composing melodies just for you.

    Your words are like that to me…… and I glimpse of the person between the lines.
    P.S. our prayers here is taking wings. It is about Mike and Nico. I will email it longer soon. I am making payroll today. And another report for Compassion sponsorship is due this afternoon.

    Love you, Pam.

  2. Pam-
    Everyone has a story-some feel more freedom to share, others hold their story tightly to their heart. When I first began blogging about Chronic Pain-I didn’t have a clue as to where it might lead, who I might meet (actually, I never thought about meeting people) instead I just started writing about the Nightmare Pain that has been Front & Center in my life for almost 16 years now.

    My Motto was with me from the beginning-my dear friend helped construct my blog site and gently pushed me forward-suddenly the words came flying out of me “PAIN WON’T BEAT ME” and that was it! As they say, the rest is history!

    Then the gifts came-meeting others who suffer with Chronic Pain, sharing with them, praying with them-I opened up in ways I never dreamed possible. Here we are, people from all walks of life, different Faith beliefs, each one having their own story to share about Pain.

    For me-I see this as a Book all in itself-but its a Book that is not meant for publishing. As we read each others blog postings, leaving comments of praise and support-I feel we are doing exactly what the Lord wants us to do—Love and support each other. Thats why the Book keeps going-
    we still have many stories to share-there will be ups and downs in our life, but we are not alone.

    We have each other-please remember that ONE thing Pam. I picked up on your not having children-please know there are many who have “lost” children in painful ways. It doesn’t mean that we fully understand your ache-but you are never alone.

    Keep writing the BOOK-we will share more as time goes on. I couldn’t think of a better way to express God’s amazing Love for each person, and I am blessed to know you!

    (((blessings))) martha

    • Thank you, Martha. Yes, sowing into other people’s lives is definitely a huge part of our stories… I am so grateful to have many who sow into mine…and opportunity to sow into theirs too. Life is not always the way we envision. I have loved being able to share some of my family traditions and things I enjoy with kids of my friends. In the natural, it can seem like there is no one really for me to leave a “legacy story’ of sorts…or to share the things I would have loved to share with my own children…but God does give us a gift of “spiritual children” as well. A true blessing. Thank you for all your encouraging words – I am blessed to know you too. 🙂 Through all the things we live – may His heart shine the most in our stories…”in all the good works He has planned for us!” 🙂

  3. Lynn Morrissey says:

    Pam, I so love your beautiful prose here, and your encouragement to write our stories. And it takes different forms for each of us, doesn’t it? I LOVED reading about your mother, and she reminded me of my own. My precious mother wanted to be a professional writer, and while I did publish her stories in my two devotional books, she has never written formally or professionally. That said, she is a PROLIFIC journal-keeper and correspondent. Like your mother, she has had penpals over the years (in England, Scotland, Norway, Germany, & RUssia). She shares her life in words through poetry, letters (to these penpals and to friends and family here at home), and in her journals….which are too numerous to count. She writes her story in her journal every single day! I have received beautiful cards (w/ notes) and letters in my mother’s flawless penmanship, the last of which was this past July–a seventeen-page-handwritten letter declaring her love and appreciation of me, as her eldest daughter!! I cannot tell you how much this means to me. What you are doing is very important here, by encouraging others to write their legacy (in whatever form that might take). Through our writing, we can tangibly show the love of Jesus in a way that will bless others for generations to come and which blesses the original recipient each time he rereads the letter! I hope your blogs, too, will be preserved through the years. I loved having met you here on these sacred Internet “pages”! Your words are indeed gold–apples of gold, which sustain and nourish your readers! ~Love, Lynn

    • Thank you so much, Lynn! (I hope the blog is appearing for you in the font I wrote it in last night…it’s suddenly quite weird on my end! All the font has become huge and totally messed up the flow and alignment etc… hoping to have this fixed soon!)

      Your mom sounds beautiful! I love that she wrote you such a tender and lengthy letter and that you were able to publish her pieces in your devotional books. And that she is such a journal writer. I wish I had journals from my mom. She used to write in her bible, but no one seems to know where that is (she was ill the last years of her life, so it must have been put away somewhere…) So happy my message came across to you about writing our stories and looking to what He wants to write in and through them. Legacy. Thanks too for your words about this blog remaining…. last night the photos were disappearing and today the font issue makes me see how quickly things can go… I’m so glad you are blessed by these posts. Not always sure how they are going over… Blessings!

      • Lynn Morrissey says:

        Thanks for your kind words about Mother, Pam. I told her I posted her legacy for the world to see on your blog today (of course, she is very shy)! But I thnk it made her smile, nonetheless. She says people’s eyes often glaze over if she tells them of her love for writing to penpals–even journaling. Oh my! That’s why we need people like you (and her) to show the importance of writing to others. And while I write many handwritten notes and letters, I am passionate about journaling….so I can understand your sadness at not having journals that your mother might have written or her personally notated Bible. I pray it will turn up when you least expect it and most need it! On journaling…..I am determining a ministry name, and am using “journaling” in it. My friend wanted me to test-drive it last week at dinner, out. Two waitresses didn’t even know what *journaling* was! I was simply amazed. So perhaps my work is cut out for me! Thank you for *getting* it. Yep…I can see your blog. All God’s best as you write to and for Him. NTTP.

  4. Thanks again, Lynn.. Sounds interesting about the journaling ministry. Yes, that amazes me too that they never heard of it. Do you have a blog? You write beautifully and are very encouraging to me and to Shelly. I used to write a lot of really long letters too…but these days, hard to find time and so much more fun to write on a blog! Still… I have seen God really use some handwritten letters He’s had me write to encourage. And I still love getting regular mail.

    Cute about your mom. Tell her not to worry… not that many read here yet. 🙂 (Unless they are secretly reading without commenting 🙂 ) I do see my stats go up whenever I link to other blogs, but not many comment much. I love to hear from people like you! Makes me feel like my words are connecting, and I can connect with others too…

    • Lynn Morrissey says:

      I just spoke to Mother, and your words made her smile. Too bad she doesn’t use a computer, or I am sure she would comment to you. You are a wonderful writer, whose words should be celebrated. And thank *you* for your kind words about my writing as well. After my book writing, I took a hiatus, and when I wrote the books, there were really no blogs around of which I was aware. This is a new phenomenon to me. And it is a joy to communicate with the authors. As for blogging, I did blog for a year about the topic of journaling on another author’s blog. When she discontinued it, then I didn’t seek to write my own…..but with all the lovely women I’m meeting, I’m prayerfully considering it. I”m pretty well staggered, though, by everyone’s prolificness in that many blog daily! Whew! I’m a slow-plodding author. Also, I will be concentrating on my journaling ministry. I’ve just graduated from coursework (very intense for over 3 years) on journal facilitation and would like to write journaling curricula (I have done that as part of my coursework and women seemed to really enjoye it), and wish to continue writing curricula…and maybe another journaling book that is interactive (whereas my first was strictly “inspirational,” per the pub’s request), and maybe something memoir-ish. BUt this must all be with God’s leading and in His time. I am simply praying about it. What all have you written? I’ve loved making your acquaintance, Pam! You have a heart of gold! ~Lynn

      • Yes, I know there are a lot of bloggers who write every day… I don’t always have the time, but some of the weekend ones are pretty short…easy to write. The journaling sounds interesting as a ministry. I have a lot of ideas but other pressing things too so haven’t gotten to the book stuff. If you go to my portfolio link at the top (just below the header photo) you can read a few articles I’ve had published – two non-fiction with Highlights for children (a biographical article on skater Sonja Henie and a fun true story about uncovering the real Carolyn Keene, author of Nancy Drew) plus one very short one on intercessory prayer that I wrote for Pray magazine. Also, at the bottom of that link, I just put an article I wrote after interviewing Andy Williams (not published). I’ve also been sending out some things I’ve written here and had good responses from editors who need more time to review. If you go to the right of my blog, you might enjoy reading some of the ones under the category “living letters” and “Carols of Christmas” – several of those are more like true memoir stories… Those are the style I am sending out to editors right now.
        Thanks for all you’ve shared…good to get to know you better too. I appreciate all your kind words . 🙂 Would love to read some of your published…

  5. Lynn Morrissey says:

    Oh thank you Pam for telling me how I may read your work. This will be such fun! And yes, journaling as a minsitry is incredible. I can’t begin to tell you how much I see God transforming women’s lives when they pick up their pens and write to Him…..and then read aloud what they have written. I can’t begin to tell you all the healing which takes place! Bless you dear one, for your interest!

    • lolitavalle says:

      Ms Lynn, I will be one of your soon to be followers. I would like to be reading from yours soon. Especially if you concentrate on journaling. I read of your comments at Redemptions Beauty and I can’t connect to your. So it would be nice to connect with your blogs soon. GBU!

  6. Jillie says:

    Hello Pam…This is my first time here. You came recommended by my friend…Lynn Morrissey! I’m so glad! You both have encouraged me today through your exchange. My Gramma Jessie wrote some poetry in her day, and even had a couple published. My Mom kept one journal, now in my possession. Just little paragraphs written of important things that happened through the years. I cherish that one little journal, written in her hand. Even the very sad things she wrote about.
    I have kept daily journal records for years. Also ‘quote’ journals. I had also begun to keep prayer journals. THEN…I read Lynn’s book, ‘Love Letters to God’, and it has changed the way I write to the Lord! It has certainly made me a more thankful person. It’s helped me to change my perspective on daily life situations, often seeing more clearly where I have been wrong and where I need to make things right. And I am free to voice anything troubling me…to Him.
    I have also always been a letter and note-writer. Several people have told me how much my words have meant to them. How my words have come at just the right moment for a need they had. I know this is all of the Lord’s doing. I do find it a crying shame that it seems to be a dying ‘art’. So many people love to receive a hand-written letter—they just don’t want to return same. That’s why I’ve saved mine in a pretty box for years.
    One thing I’m sure learning from bloggers—it’s A.O.K. to be open and transparent. Actually, it’s preferred.

    • Welcome here, Jillie! Yes, I know you from Shelly’s… You are so blessed to have the journal from your mom. And published poems from your Grandma, how nice that is.

      I have mainly kept prayer journals…and like you, I’ve written many long letters. Letters are such a precious gift. People can take them out and read them whenever they want, ongoing… I love that too, because God can keep speaking through them. And when someone is touched by a letter, it just means so much. I used to save every letter I ever got from good friends, but it became too hard to maintain. I hate too, that it is becoming a “lost art.” Same thing with reading… kindles? No… I want the feel and smell of the real thing in my hands! It sounds like Lynn’s book really made a difference in your life. That’s wonderful… and wonderful, yes, to be able to be totally yourself with the Lord. I’m glad you were blessed by the exchange here… 🙂


  7. Joy says:

    I lost myself and live with you for a while. You made me think, smile and inspired. Yes, what is my story? In some way, i share my story through blogging, but my dream is really write my story from the very beginning, that I need lots of time which I don’t have right now. But someday….

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