Thursday, January 6, 2011
Stewarding Your Story
For many years sharing my testimony was very intimidating. And if I'm honest with myself, there are still days when it's a mountain before me. Sharing something as personal as a testimony makes ones very vulnerable. It's kind of like standing in front of a jr high auditorium in your underwear. Can we say exposed?
So sharing my story has been about as high on my list as having a root canal. In fact, I don't mind going to the dentist so a root canal might actually win out.
To make matters worse, how often do you hear people talking about how they crafted their story? For some reason, it's passed in Christian communities as a given; everyone knows their story. But while we know our stories, that doesn't mean we can communicate them. Or even why we should care. After all, most of us fall in the gray area of non-dramatic events. I was never addicted to drugs or living on the streets or visited by angels, so why should my story make any difference at all?
And although none of us would say this to a friend, many of us would say it to ourselves. Doesn't sound very holy, does it?
I think the moment that was truly revolutionary for me was when I realized that my story was so much bigger than I am. To me, it's small, insignificant, ordinary. But put into the larger story... the larger story that God is crafting... it's essential.
Have you ever seen a puzzle that's missing a few pieces? Sure it's still beautiful and often times you can still make out the picture. The frame is there and most of the characters. But there's something missing. I hate putting together a puzzle that's missing pieces. It drives me insane to come so close to the end and be missing that ONE piece.
Our individual stories are much the same. God crafts a puzzle out of our stories, every moment drawing us closer to the finished product. But when we remain silent... when we hold back what God's done in and through us... the pictures incomplete. There's something missing. The picture's still beautiful, but there's something lonely about that hole. Something empty.
For me to play down my story, to keep my mouth shut, devalues what God has done in my own life. Who am I to say what He's created isn't beautiful? Who am I to evaluate the worth of what He's done in my life?
No, it's just my job to share it!
My prayer today is that you'll read this with an open mind. Yes, it's scary. If anyone knows that, I do. Rather, allow God to speak to you. Is there someone who is waiting to hear your story? Speak fearlessly!