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I just read a story in Bob Goff's book "Love Does." 


It was about a man I call George who found a painting which truly spoke to him. It was a painting of a puppeteer who appeared to be an older man, surrounded by his family and friends, captivating them with a marionette, expressing laughter and engagement as he weaves a great story. This scene, immortalized in a painting, resonates deeply with George, who wanted to purchase it. George sees himself as a similar storyteller, akin to a puppeteer, bringing knowledge and joy to his extended family and others. This painting also evokes spiritual reflections, paralleling how Jesus gathered people with his stories about a life filled with love and purpose.


In this story, George's journey to acquire this painting reveals layers of authenticity and value. In the gallery, he learns that the piece is the work of an 80-year-old European master, reportedly nearing blindness. Whether true or part of a sales pitch, this detail adds a poignant depth to the artwork. After a year of saving, George returns to find two identical versions of the painting. He is advised to display the replica to protect the original from damage, a common practice for expensive art. However, he hangs the genuine piece, finding its authenticity more meaningful. I love George's decisions to reflect his values and the story's theme: authentic connections, whether in art or life, are irreplaceable and hold the true essence of the value of genuine connections, much like the authentic stories Jesus told.


I changed the man's name in this story because it reminds me of my dear mentor, George Pulliam. George has gone to be with our Lord, but his memory will forever live on with all who knew him and had the privilege of sitting at his feet as family and protégé.


Jesus and George knew how to tell stories, convince us to claim we are created enough, and remind us to show up as authentic and be there for others to follow.


How about you? Do you display the authentic self so others will desire to follow?


Watch for the blind spots.

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