First, one of my favorite authors, Donald Miller, spoke up at Mars Hill Church about “Story”. A friend pointed it out to me and I listened online.
Then, last week, our senior pastor did a sermon on “The Power of Story.” It was incredible how closely it tracked to Donald Miller’s talk but yet Chris had not heard Donald’s talk. That is the power of God and the Holy Spirit.
This morning, as I was driving in to work, the DJ was talking about God’s story in her life and challenging us each to discover our own God stories. Hers is that she is a cancer survivor. She had a type of cancer that 75% of all people who get it end up dieing of it. She is very much alive and cancer-free several years later. She talked about how others might have a story like being a single parent and how God has seen them through that.
The fact is, we all have stories all the time. The question is what do we do with them. God gives us all potential for big stories because those stories can be used as “jumping off places” to do great work for Him. God gives us overriding stories that follow us through our entire life and he also gives us opportunities to make the most with many smaller stories … stories that may last just a year or a few weeks or, really, even just a few minutes or seconds. That is the power of God.
I have often felt bad that my faith journey doesn’t include any real dramatic conversion or transformation story. I have heard other Christians say that as well. Of course, feeling that way is sort of stupid because folks who do have dramatic stories of transformation or conversion or recovery will be quick to tell you that, while they would not want to deny God what only He could do through their story, life could have been a whole lot easier had their story not been so dramatic.
So, this morning, as I listed to the DJ, I thought about what is God’s big story in my life. What has he given me uniquely as a “jumping off place” for doing great things for Him? I can really only think of one thing and that is the people he has blessed me with in my life. First and foremost, obviously, are my wonderful family and close friends but my story goes far beyond that.
I do not say this to brag because it is not something I have done – it is only something that God could do and, because of that, I know He expects me to make much of it as part of my story. God has allowed me to meet and know many people during my life. Literally thousands. And He adds to their numbers daily. Again, I am not bragging on myself. This is only because of God. There is nothing special about me … never has been. I am not good looking. Have never been athletic. Have always been pretty quiet and am definitely an introvert in every sense of the word. I am not by any even remote stretch of the imagination a great leader even though God has given me tremendous opportunities to try in that area. I always got pretty good grades in school but, let’s face it, good grades and $4.25 will get you a nice latte at Starbucks and that’s about it. I make mistakes all the time. Sometimes I think I specialize in mistakes. I am good at ideas (sometimes) but lousy at follow-through. But, despite all these facts, God has blessed me with knowing thousands of people across not only the United States but the globe. These have come through business and other contacts. I know people from almost all walks of life. They’re all amazing but they run the gamut in terms of what they “look like” both literally and figuratively.
Knowing these thousands of people scattered all over, I think, is the story opportunity God has given me. It is my “jumping off place” to try to do something great for Him. It is a blessing. I must make much of it.
What is the “big story opportunity” He has given you? It’s there – believe me.