Again, for the umpteenth time, I was paralyzed with fear, downcast with discouragement, and riddled with doubt. Cognitively, I knew I should not be afraid. Emotionally, I realized I had sunk to a low place. Spiritually, I recognized I needed to trust God and not doubt. But mental reasoning did not change my reality; I was still encumbered with fear, discouragement, and doubt.
Can you relate?
In these moments, I repeatedly turned to my favorite stories…in biographies, novels, literature, newspaper articles, movies, and Scripture. I escaped into the realm of adventure, drama, tragedy, battles, romance, heroism, and rescue. And I emerged with my soul stirred with hopeful longing. There is something magical about a story’s ability to bypass my head with its facts and data and touch my heart strings with raw emotion. Truly, the heart is fluent in the language of stories.
Yes, I love a good story.
As the Author and the Finisher, no one writes a better story than God. For example, the shepherd boy David, on an errand to deliver bread and cheese to his brothers, is abruptly thrust into national prominence, having slain a nine-foot nine giant who no one else had the courage to confront. Seemingly languishing in prison indefinitely, Joseph is suddenly elevated to second in command to Pharaoh in Egypt. How these stories and many others from the scriptures have thrilled my soul over the years!
But in my life, I find myself resisting the battles, rescues, and dramatic twists and turns that make for a good story. I like my comfort zone. I want guarantees that my journey will be easy, quick, and painless. My natural inclination is to play it safe, but predictability makes for an awfully boring narrative.
Where it gets personal real fast is truthfully answering the question, “Am I allowing God to write my story?” Am I submitting to His plan or filling in my own terms and conditions?
I must decide whether fear will dictate my actions or whether I will surrender the pen to God. What helps me to make the latter choice instead of the former is remembering that God’s track record in my life has been impeccable. What I treasure the most are the very storylines I would never have envisioned on my own.
And so, as I wrestle afresh with leaving my comfort zone, I again remind myself of what I want my life to be. An adventure worth telling again and again. A fuller, more impactful, and grander story than I could ever have imagined. A narrative penned by the One who makes the impossible possible, breathes life into death, and causes the desert to bloom as the rose.
When the story of your life is told, what do you want to be able to say? Join the conversation and share your thoughts below!
Did you miss Susan’s live teaching on this topic? Check out Who’s Writing Your Story blog now.