The power of story is often overlooked and underestimated, but really, isn’t that what links us all together, from generation to generation and across the aisle and down the street? It’s what connects us to one another and helps us find our place in life, our purpose. Otherwise we’re just walking around in a fog, completely oblivious to all that God is doing in and around us (or as my pastor would say, in us, with us and through us).
Even our local paper gets this idea of story . . . asking people to talk about what they’re not giving up right now during this recession. One might think they’re missing the point completely – and yet, maybe the point is just to get people talking. When we’re talking, we’re not internalizing, right? And when we’re not internalizing, we’re not making up stories in our head; rather we’re living in the stories that are our reality.
One question we can ask now in this time of recession is “what stories do I want to be telling months and years from now?” But I also think that telling and hearing stories from our past can help form our stories going forward. So that’s my question for you today. What stories can you share that speak courage to yourself and others in what are getting to be trying times for so many?
For me, it’s the time our house burned down in 1978. The house we were building as well as the house (trailer) we were living in. Four days before Christmas. It’s feeling for my gram who literally watched the house her husband was building for her daughter (we lived next door) burn to the ground, as the rural fire truck got stuck in the mud on its way across the field. It’s laughing at my sister who couldn’t understand how the Christmas tree could burn when the box clearly said “flameproof.” It’s remembering the generosity of our church family who showered us with every material blessing we needed to begin again . . . from pillowcases to measuring cups, some of which we still have today. It’s watching my mom and dad begin again and carry on and stick together through it all. It’s knowing that, in the end, you can never really have it all taken from you.
So that’s my story (one of them anyways). What’s yours? I’d really love to hear it and maybe you really need to tell it.