We tend to gravitate to stories don’t we? Drawn in by the tragedies and the triumphs of other human beings, we look for a common denominator between their stories and ours, finding ourselves lifted out of the commonplace and into a different realm.
So, have you ever thought of your own life as a story? If someone was to describe you and the events of your life, how would it go? Are there patterns? Is there a common thread?
If you were to draw a horizontal line through the center of a page and chronologically begin to document the highlights of your life along the top of the line from left to right, – then the lies, fears, and hurtful things underneath the line in the same way, what would you see emerging?
When we begin to pay close attention to our lives (the deepest desires of our hearts, the fears that often paralyze us, what brings us joy, what brings us sorrow) and look past the day-to-day pressures of work, errands, duty, and endless details, perhaps we can begin to hear the whispers of our Creator and how He longs to fulfill the longings He deposited into our hearts. If we would just trust Him.
The negative aspects that we have jotted down underneath the line typically lend a hand in persuading us to believe lies about ourselves over time. It may be the pain of abuse, low self esteem – the effects of any number of things – that have bruised and damaged us; sometimes crippling us to the degree that we become immobile in certain areas.
May I suggest that you don’t have to remain a prisoner to what has been written there? Know this: the enemy of your soul is 1st and foremost the enemy of our loving God, and his ultimate goal is to keep you from living a fulfilled, victorious life. The events of your past that have caused you to wither, to seethe in anger, to shy away from adventure or the unknown are all ploys to keep you from fulfilling what you were created for.
Don’t dismay. God is not oblivious to the treacherous one. Like Joseph, we can learn to say, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.” Genesis 50:20
The Bible is often read as a compilation of many stories, which of course is true, but have you ever considered it as a whole story? God’s story? The weaving of tales of heartbreak, dysfunction, and despair with faith, honor, courage and blind trust in the One True God throughout history to tell us of His Hero’s heart, His desire to walk closely with us and give deep meaning to our lives. We are each a part of this Story. When we partner with God and accept His gift of grace and crazy-over-the-top love and daily let Him fill us up with His goodness, we can then begin to live a remarkable story. A story only we can live, because there is no one else quite like us and only we can reflect His beauty in the way He designed for us to.
Your words of encouragement, act of mercy, gesture of kindness, smile, laugh, ability to listen, deliberate choice to forgive… all these are ways in which only you can impact the people around you in a remarkable way.
Be that beacon on a hill. Let your life tell a truly remarkable story. It matters.
For more info on this topic, check out Dan Allender’s book: To Be Told: Know Your Story -Shape Your Future, or Donald Miller’s : Storyline: Finding Your Subplot in God’s story
Be your best,
“And who knows that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” – Esther 4:14