I am studying for Part 1 of my comprehensive exam for my Masters. It has been a long, 5-year journey I began before even getting pregnant with Calista! I just re-read a paper written 4 years ago for a class and it pulls together so many thoughts I’ve had lately about stories.
Why is it, in this technologically savvy age that we still read books? The library is always busy. Airports still hold millions who have a coffee cup in one hand and a book (or e-reader) in the other. I love it. I think it is because everyone loves a good story.
You may know I was an English major and have a not-so-secret desire to be published some day, changing the world’s mind through some powerfully articulated message using WORDS. I love words. Apoplectic. Tickle. Asinine. Caress. Burn. Put them in the right order and BAM they can change us, motivate us, endear us or irritate us! The instructor at the Y class I take often says “hoo-hah!” That’s right, Anna. HOO HAH! Love words.
Stories still tug at our hearts when written well, using the right words. Donald Miller has swept through the barrier between “Christian literature” and secular. Bless his heart. His latest, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years was just what the doctor ordered lately. A friend/mentor handed it to me and 3 days later I had finished it.
Miller writes about the grand story that God has written and has invited us into. I forget now how much Miller said or what I think… no plagiarism intended here. It was such a brilliant image for me.
There is a story unfolding. The ending we know, yet we are all excited to see how it turns out. We have our Hero, who does die for the best cause ever (saving the world) but doesn’t stay dead. Even though some of us know the ending, others refuse to crack open this story, refuse to live out the story that the Author has written out for him/her.
Miller started this book in order to live a better story than the one he was currently living. Brian and I are in the same boat. We realized in January that our kids were driving us nuts, we were getting comfortable in the ‘burbs of Duluth and didn’t like what we saw in our priority lists. So we disciplined our kids more intentionally (still working on this)… Looked into adoption (are in the midst of paperwork heaven and social work business) and actively trying to live every day like it is our last. It means we go biking on Sunday instead of lying around. We head out after dinner and explore Hartley Park. We invite friends over for dinner. We help at the nursery at church. Each day I think – what is one thing I’m so glad I did today instead of putting off?
If Jesus came back tomorrow, I would hope I wrote some words to press the Image of the Best Character ever into the your minds. Or I would hope I invested in my neighbors with chocolatey goodness known as Nestle white chocolate chip cookies and a conversation. I would wish I had lived the best story that He has written for me.
What story are you living?