My Selma story and its impact

Published 7:29 pm Thursday, June 13, 2013

I think after residing in Selma for more than a year, I can finally put my finger on what I love so much about Selma and articulate why living and working here is rewarding.

In journalism we tell all sorts of stories throughout the day. Even when our time cards are punched out and we are no longer typing, asking questions and being hounded for information, we are most likely somewhere telling a story.

Thinking about our lives as one long story, and then even greater, the story of humanity — it is daunting to consider what our role is in that book. When God is encouraging us through something and asking us to carry out His will, where does that fit inside the pages of the greatest story ever told? We have some amazing moments in our lives where we feel like we are making a difference but what about all of the other smaller, more trivial moments?

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When we are pressing the snooze button on our alarm clocks, when we are day dreaming with our faces pressed against the window for hours, when we are eating cereal each morning — where does it all fit into God’s plan for us and how does it affect things on a global scale?

I don’t know the answer to that question, and to be honest, I am not sure many do. But what I do know is that I love Selma because as a resident here I can feel where my puzzle piece fits into the greater Selma puzzle. I think that is why Selma natives cherish this city so much. My observation is that those that love Selma are also those that know exactly where their story fits in to the overall story of Selma.

And that is why it is difficult, though still important, for me to write stories that do not highlight the prosperity and warmth of wheels turning in our city. I have to switch gears to tell stories that make those wheels stop turning only for a brief time and tell stories about murder, failing plans or wrong doing such as the lack of code enforcement and the city council decision to enter into a possibly illegal executive session this week. It hurts to call out others I have an appreciation for, but even in the stories of defeat, there is hope in between the lines of that chapter.

Somewhere I believe the story of what God is doing in Selma is being told from person to person, front porch to front porch and grocery cart to grocery cart. From one mom in the carpool line to the other, I know in my heart a good story is being spread.

Many don’t know the impact our lives will have on the world, but everyone in Selma knows where their life will appear in the story of Selma. They feel their contribution each day, whether they start a donut shop, renovate downtown buildings or sit as a board member for the chamber.