Friday, February 27, 2009


Posted by Leona Bergstrom

I have been working a lot lately on encouraging people to share their life stories. While that may seem like a daunting task, comparable to sorting a closetful of photographs, it really needn’t overwhelm one. The idea is simply that we intentionally share the stories of our lives with others as a window to our soul. Sharing one’s life stories gives meaning and significance to the teller as well as blesses the hearer.

If asked to share your life story, however, one hardly knows where to begin. I have a friend who sits down with a new acquaintance and says “Tell me your story. From birth to now.” Wow. For some of us, that’s a long conversation!

But what if we just took little sound bites? I’ve begun to ask people to tell me about a TREE in their life. Now, that might sound rather corny, but I’ll bet already you’ve thought of a tree story from somewhere in your life. Maybe it was a special tree you climbed as a child, or a tree you sat under with a friend and shared dreams, or perhaps you buried Rover under an oak tree on your farm. For me, I immediately think of the tree we called “The Old Brown Tree” that grew on the land right between my house and my grandma’s house. It was an old apple tree with limbs arranged in the manner of a castle. I spent endless hours entertaining imaginary friends in the drawing room and the formal dining room. I read books in the palatial get it.

So, If you want to just glimpse a tiny bit into one’s life and learn a whole lot about him/her — ask about a Tree. It’s a great beginning to unfolding the life story of someone you want to know.

(Photo by Jari Schroderus, shared via Flickr)

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