Welcome to Grace Unscripted

Welcome to Grace Unscripted where we invite you to join us on the journey of discovering God’s sufficient grace amid the uncertainty and unpredictability of life.

Life is lived between the terror and wonder of what we can and can’t see. Between what we know, don’t know, and may never know.

Amid the everyday kaleidoscope of beauty and chaos, of pain and joy, of being loved and being forgotten, sometimes we wonder if there is any story line at all.

For now, we see through a glass darkly – some objects are clear and brilliant while others are smudged and shadowy. We often live in “shadowlands” (CS Lewis), in a dusk pierced by flashes of God-light – at times glorious, at times frightening.

God does not explain himself to our satisfaction. In his wisdom and love he does not show us everything we want to understand.

Yet he is at work in all things – in our joys and sorrows, successes and failures. He is at work in all things because he is present with us, never forsaking us at any moment or in any circumstance.

But we live our lives as unfinished works of art, like Niggle’s tree in Tolkien’s story “Leaf by Niggle.”

We see the creation – we feel and taste. We see the fall – we weep and bleed. We see Jesus – his life, death, resurrection, and ascension. And we have reason to believe the promise that all will be well; that all must be well.

So, the story winds on from pole to pole, and we find ourselves somewhere in between. In Jesus we are tethered to that story, and we know how it ends.

But where is the script for our lives?

Perhaps you feel like your life is unscripted. Maybe you fear you have lost the plot line that ties you to the great story. Maybe your moments of joy and beauty seem like a distant memory. Maybe the chaos, sadness, loneliness, or befuddlement so cloud the air that you can’t see the words on the page.

Welcome to Grace Unscripted.

Please use the Contact form to inquire about Sheryl & Steve’s availability for speaking, mentoring, or conversation.

Keep the earth below my feet
For all my sweat, my blood runs weak
Let me learn from where I have been
Keep my eyes to serve, my hands to learn
Keep my eyes to serve, my hands to learn

“Beneath My Feet”
lyrics by Marcus Mumford, Ben Lovett, Winston Marshall, & Ted Dwane

If you could do it, I suppose, it would be a good idea to live your life in a straight line —starting, say, in the Dark Wood of Error, and proceeding by logical steps through Hell and Purgatory and into Heaven. Or you could take the King’s Highway past appropriately named dangers, toils, and snares, and finally cross the River of Death and enter the Celestial City. But that is not the way I have done it, so far. I am a pilgrim, but my pilgrimage has been wandering and unmarked. Often what has looked like a straight line to me has been a circle or a doubling back. I have been in the Dark Wood of Error any number of times. I have known something of Hell, Purgatory, and Heaven, but not always in that order. The names of many snares and dangers have been made known to me, but I have seen them only in looking back. Often I have not known where I was going until I was already there. I have had my share of desires and goals, but my life has come to me or I have gone to it mainly by way of mistakes and surprises. Often I have received better than I have deserved. Often my fairest hopes have rested on bad mistakes. I am an ignorant pilgrim, crossing a dark valley. And yet for a long time, looking back, I have been unable to shake off the feeling that I have been led — make of that what you will.

Wendell Berry, Jayber Crow

Norman Lear… produced many of the greatest television comedies of the latter half of the 20th century, the television century. At a recent 100th birthday party, he shared wisdom with friends. He said there are two words we don’t honor enough. One is “over” and the other is “next.” There’s a kind of hammock between the two and it is right now, this moment we’re sharing. He was saying: Be present. But as he talked, I heard embedded within his words a layer of advice: That it’s actually a key skill to be able to see when something’s over, when it’s the past, not the future; that you have to have eyes that can find the next area of constructiveness, which may take time; and in the time between, the hammock, you must maintain your peace and poise.

Peggy Noonan, WSJ Jan 5, 2023

Most banner photographs are Ithaca-area scenes captured by our daughter-in-law, Teresa Mogilovna. Used with permission.

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