Dispatch: Everybody Loves A Good Story
Recently, my brother and I went to the movies together for a much-needed break from the insanity of school, work, and let’s just say life in general. After the first movie ended, we had such a great time that we decided we might as well make it a double feature and followed the first movie with a second. As fun as this was, our semi-late night became a super late night, and a big part of me (the “working-me”) regretted it when my alarm ticked on at 4:07AM the next morning.
Nonetheless, as my brother and I do, especially on a late night, we got to talkin’ all theological- and philosophical-like. Our conclusion was simple: everybody loves a good story.
Our universal obsession with story has been true of human existence from the outset. Throughout human history it is evidenced that people have gathered around storytellers in arenas, town squares, and fires for as long as we can tell. In the Bible, we also see a similar interest in story. Through the stories of Moses, the tales of the Israelites, the allegories of the prophets, and the parables of Jesus, stories, whether historical or metaphorical, played a significant role in shaping meaning and direction for the first-century Jew and have continued to do so for every Christian throughout the ages.
In the wake of the Internet and the digital media age, human access to stories is unprecedented. With Netflix, Hulu, and Youtube as well as the prevalence of blogs, news sites, and social media, our minds and hearts are wrapped up in one great story after the next. Whether fiction or non-fiction, our emotions and imaginations get wrapped up in the many lessons and discoveries we glean from both the fantastic and relatable.
While our society today is utterly immersed in stories portrayed in books, sound waves, and on screens, my brother and I concluded that there are three stories in particular that inescapably have the greatest impact on the Christian life, more so than any other story we might experience or observe. These three stories are:
- the story of God
- the story of the church
- the story of our very own life.
How we understand each of these stories informs how we interact with, approach, and relate to all three parties (yes, even ourselves). Over the next three posts, I hope to address each category and explore how we understand how God’s story, the church’s story, and our own story intersect with our lives and ultimately guide and lead us to become the people that we are.
In the meantime, since my set-up of this series has taken up my word-count limit, I will leave you with this challenge:
Your life is a story that was spoken into being by the very breath of God.
Pause for a moment and read that truth once again. Sit in it for a moment.
It’s true. Your story matters and means something—enough for God to have spoken it into being. So do not forget to live your story because you are too busy watching other people’s stories. Your story is powerful!