Story {pt. 1}

The concept of story keeps cropping up in my life.

Through Bible study.

Through my sporadic readings of trendy authors.

Through word of mouth.

Through seemingly random conversations.

It’s like God’s trying to grab my attention. To get me to re-rethink story.

A few weeks ago, I re-read A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, the crazy book that changed my life last year. I was sitting slightly cramped on an airline. Trying to ignore the people who were cramping my personal space and get into my relaxed zone. Some people pray that they will have wonderful opportunities to meet people on planes. I’m the type that prays for an empty seat next to me. But I digress.

In the book, Donald said something that struck a deep chord in my heart and caused the message to reverberate for quite awhile.

“If the point of life is the same as the point of a story, the point of life is character transformation. If I got any comfort as I set out on my first story, it was that in nearly every story, the protagonist is transformed. He’s a jerk at the beginning and nice at the end, or a coward at the beginning and brave at the end. If the character doesn’t change, the story hasn’t happened yet. And if story is derived from real life, if story is just condensed version of life then life itself may be designed to change us so that we evolve from one kind of person to another. “

I like that. It’s a good way for me to view life.

You can talk about life purpose, you can talk about your mission, but let’s just stop and talk about your life story. What kind of story is it?

For a long time, mine was crummy.

I just did the bare minimum to float by. I had ambitions but they got lost in the everyday worries. I didn’t know that I really could pick and choose. I let my fears get in the way of so many good things. So many.

I’ve already blogged a lot about Fear so I’m not going to repeat myself. You can just look it up and reread it yourself.

Fear sucked away the fire in my soul, deadened my senses to the wonder that was around me, and made me look down at myself instead of up to the Lord. I’d trip over myself because I became a caricature of myself.

No one likes stories about caricatures. They are interesting for awhile but they only last five panels for a comic strip – if they are lucky. They aren’t real. They live exaggerations. And they wear you out if you stay in their company too long.

I know because that happened to me. People that I loved thought I was angry at them or couldn’t stand them. Really, I didn’t. The truth was that I was embarrassed and ashamed of the story that I was living. But I felt like a hungry tiger stuck in a concrete cage. It only took taking a huge chance to get out.

Looking back, I could have created a good story back then. At some points, I did. I chose to make good memories, to do crazy things, and to love people. But the time had to come for me to cast off fear and decide that there was something bigger in store.


That it was time for me to change storylines.

2 Responses to “Story {pt. 1}”

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