Gratitude Day 298

Wed., July 10, 2019

Luke 21:29  – Then Jesus told them a story: When you see a fig tree or any other tree …

I love a good story. I love to tell them, discover them and share them.

Over the weekend, Hubby Rick and I discovered a new story. And we’ve been telling others about it.

We discovered this story in Lake Geneva, WI. Over time, we’ve been visiting the various official Wisconsin historical sites. There happens to be one in Lake Geneva that we had not been to, so, we made a trip to see Black Point Estate and Gardens.  

We were not disappointed. Built in the 1870’s, this Queen Anne Victorian house was built by Chicago beer baron Conrad Siepp. He started building on the property before the great Chicago fire in 1871, as did other wealthy folks from Chicago. For families who lost their homes and businesses during the fire, many of them lived in their summer homes in Lake Geneva while Chicago was rebuilt.

The Siepp family lost neither their Chicago home nor business. As one of the few beer businesses still in existence after the fire, the Siepp family’s resources only expanded.

Black Point remained in the Siepp family until 2005 when it was given to the Wisconsin Historical Society. Today, a couple Siepp family relatives still have homes very close to the original Black Point, which demonstrates how this area is part of their story.

To visit the home, visitors must travel by boat to the property and then climb 120 steps from the shoreline up to the home. On our way to the estates, our boat driver/tour guide shared lots of stories about other homes on the lake.

As docents took us through Black Point, they shared stories and history and amusing tidbits about the family and their lifestyle. They painted a picture story for us to hear and see.

As Christians, we also have a story. We have our personal faith story. The church has a faith story. All of these stories are rooted in God’s story, which is where our story begins. Fortunately, a book provides us with this story, our history and amusing tidbits about our religious ancestors. This book, the Bible, provides us the story of Jesus and how his redeeming work makes a difference for each of us.

It’s important that we know this story. No, we can’t remember all of the story nor all the specific details. I pray we engage with the story on a regular basis because … it is OUR story. It’s OUR history. It’s OUR connection to God, who orchestrated the story.

Yes, the story can be confusing. Our perspective of the story may not be like someone else’s perspective … and that’s OK. What I do hope is that we make this story personal and meaningful for us.

Maybe it’s because I love old homes and live in one myself. Maybe it’s because I could imagine family members being and living in this home. Maybe it’s because the docent knew family members and could share personal experiences. What I do know is that the story of Black Point became very real and interesting for me.

Is the story we find in the Bible real for us? It is interesting enough that we keep returning to it so we can discover and rediscover it anew? Do we see how we fit into the story, which personalizes the story even further for us?

 Throughout his ministry, Jesus told story after story to the people he was with. Why? Because he to, loved a good story. He knew a story would draw people in. A story brings things to life and helps us see ourselves within the context.

Do you see yourself in God’s story? Have you made it personal? Will God’s story, and your role in this story, amaze you today?

For the gift of stories, I am grateful.

Dear God – thank you for providing us with a copy of Your story. Help us see ourselves in Your story. May we make it personal for ourselves this very day. Amen.

Blessings –


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