Does anyone really know the whole story?
As an avid reader and aspiring writer, I yearn to read and convey the complete picture. If I'm diving into my imagination, as the author, I have the power to reveal as I wish. But as a reader, I'm at the mercy of the author's revelation.
For example, my favorite story put to paper is Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. But, like millions of Austen fans, I yearn to know more. What happened after the wedding? In between the fairy tale and the epilogue? Ms. Austen only revealed so much, and modern authors have since filled in the blanks with their imaginations in the form of fan fiction, which I admit, is my guilty pleasure.
I've reflected on this since yesterday when I visited the town I grew up in. Ocilla, Ga. holds pleasant memories, but also some of the most tragic I've ever experienced. For many years, crossing the county line caused a full blown anxiety attack, and I'm ashamed to say, has made me reluctant to go back.
So, I haven't visited often. Yesterday, though, I did. You see, the town now houses one of the dearest people in my life—one who shares pages in my story, and I his.
While I was there, I purposefully drove the backroads of Irwin County—a place where my familial roots run deep into the rich soil. I paused and took in the blue sky and the fields of cotton stretching as far as the eye could see. The century old farmhouses captured my imagination, and eventually I found myself at Henderson Chapel, staring at the graves of my parents and grandparents. It was peaceful, and for the first time in a long time I took a deep, cleansing breath within the county limits of Irwin County, Georgia.
My experience is only a snapshot in history, and the picture is so much bigger than I could conceive or imagine. As I stood among the many graves of multiple relatives, I found rest in the fact that I am not the author of this story.
Amanda Williams is a forty-year old wife and mother of two who can still swing her pony tail and display just a tad of sass. She is also a Jesus loving girl who realizes she is nothing without the One who saved her. Amanda has two degrees specializing in serving students with special needs and is currently working in the field of Leadership Development. She is a Christian author, speaker, blogger, and publisher who loves serving beside her husband at her local place of worship, First Baptist Church of Ocala.