Who Tells Your Story?

arnold-palmerThe story being told today about Arnold Palmer is that he was a lovely man.  He was one of the best golfers in history.  He was an avid pilot.   He was the namesake of a delicious summer drink.

All in all, his story is securely honorable.  The same can’t be said of everybody.

Like Arnold Palmer, Keith Lamont Scott can no longer tell his own story. But the general account of Scott’s life depends on who is telling it.  Some say he was a good neighbor and employee.  He was family man  – married to the same woman for more than twenty years and father of seven children, one of whom he was waiting for at a school bus stop the afternoon he died.  Others say that he was a convicted felon, arrested more than five times, that he had brain damage and temperament issues.  In the coming months, his story will be debated and there’s nothing he can do about it.

Even in life, we don’t always get to tell our own story.  (Check out Denise Anderson’s encouragement here.)

Who is telling your story out there?

We don’t tell our stories when church isn’t safe.   The same people who sit beside us in worship and other church gatherings have too often been known to shred us behind our backs.  Sharing false narratives about each other is a common sin.

We don’t share our stories if nobody invites us to do so.

Imagine a Church that invites all people to share their real stories  – even the hardest ones – and then helps connect the dots between those stories and God’s story.  That, my friends, creates a relevant spiritual community.

Imagine that kind of Church.  It would be so refreshing.

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3 responses to “Who Tells Your Story?

  1. Hi Jan…we met on the Big Event cruise. Someone you would like to know is Rebecca Anderson, new co-pastor in Chicago of Bethany UCC. She is very into “story” and she and her co-pastor are also doing a startup alternative church called Gilead Chicago. You can google that and find the website which tells you about their vision to have people share a meal and tell their stories, which are inevitably stories of God. Love reading your blog!

  2. I lead “The Gathering’,a 1001NWC in Sacramento that is exactly this kind of ministry. Take a look at out website SacGathering.org. Better yet, come visit us and share your story with us. Our next theme is “Making a Difference” and that evening in January 4-5 speakers will tell a 10 minute personal story.

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