Living the Greatest Story Ever Told

‘Neither revolution nor reformation can ultimately change a society, rather you must tell a new powerful tale, one so persuasive that it sweeps away the old myths and becomes the preferred story, one so inclusive that it gathers all the bits of our past and our present into a coherent whole, one that even shines some light into the future so that we can take the next step forward.  If you want to change a society, then you have to tell an alternative story.’
-Ivan Illich

Photo Credit: Jacopo Romei
Photo Credit: Jacopo Romei

If you’ve checked out the about me section of this blog, you’ll know I love stories.

Ivan’s quote has me thinking – to look at life in terms of being a part of a bigger story – it provokes me to think about the way I want to live.  I’ve only got one story, one shot at this thing called life.  I want to make the most of it.

The human spirit desires purpose.  We have a natural inclination to do something meaningful, something that matters.

And then we grow up.

We forget the dreams we had.  We get busy trying to scratch out a living for ourselves.  We become comfortable in routine.  We forget that we have an opportunity – a story – in life.

In this present day most of our stories, our lives, have become individual pursuits.  But having read Ivan’s stance, I see the possibility of a new story emerging.  One that captures all parts to make a whole, one that builds on a foundation of lives previous to pave way for a strong future.  To achieve the most meaning in life we have to help each other.

My question to you (and myself) is this: are you living the best story possible?

I can attest that, not too long ago, I wasn’t.  I’d stopped pushing myself, I’d settled for comfortable.  I was wasting potential, and the sad part is – I knew it.  The thought of putting myself out there seemed daunting.  Then I met two strangers who spoke life into me.  Those encounters gave me the kick-start to once again pursue the ‘more’.

Are you using your gifts, talents, and abilities to cultivate a story of purpose?  Or could you use a ‘kick-start’?

One day, long ago, Jesus sat with a group of people and told them a story.  ‘He told them about a wise man who built his house on rock and a foolish man who built his house – no doubt with a lot less effort and cost – on sand.  He was trying to get people to think about who they were and where they were going in life; about who they wanted to become.’  (excerpt from Steve Chalke’s Being Human: How to Become the Person You Were Meant to Be – I strongly recommend this book, it’s ah-mazing!).

We can all take a note from Jesus’ story – to think about who we are and where we’re going.

Last night I wrote out my five year plan (more on that later).  There is a lot I want to accomplish in the next five years – awesome goals that I hope to achieve, but I have no idea if I will.  That doesn’t matter.

‘Our greatest danger in life is not that we aim too high and miss, but that we aim too low and hit our target.’
-Steve Chalke (again)

Aim high.  You’re living the greatest story ever told.


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