I love a good story.
“I have to tell you what happened…” are the words that bridge acquaintances into friends. Telling the stories of our lives to others invites them in to see, hear, and feel the things that are shaping our lives. Stories are invitations into experiences that are incomplete until shared with all the important people in our lives.
When my children were younger, I was a character in nearly all their stories. Rarely did they need to tell me what happened–I was there! Now that they are nearly grown, I must rely on them sharing their experiences. I hate it when they keep their stories of life to themselves! So when they do share, I take careful note–I know this is important to them.
I love a good story. The ones told by loved ones are the best. Their telling of the story says, “You weren’t there for this, so I must make the story complete by adding you to its telling. The story grows richer by your knowledge of it.” It’s as if the teller doesn’t really believe you can truly know them unless the chapter with this story is told.
It’s true too with the Bible. So many times we approach it for mere facts–“I’m sad today, I need a verse about joy.” “I’m feeling greedy today–I need a verse about being content.” “I’m so mad at someone–quick, find me a verse about forgiveness!” Or maybe we just like to gain Bible trivia facts–for some of us, we like to be able to impress others with our collection of knowledge about cubits, atonement sacrifices, and festival requirements. There’s a time and a place for diligent study, memorization, language study, and so forth, but we miss the invitation of the Author if we forget the Bible is a story.
God has left us a story of His workings so we can know who He is. His telling of the story says, “You weren’t there for this, so I must make the story complete by adding you to its telling. The story grows richer by your knowledge of it–in fact, you grow richer by your knowledge of it! You can more fully know me through this story.”
Over at the Internet Monk, Chaplain Mike has issued an invitation to his reader to practice “story reading” the book of Ruth. (You might want to hop on over there and read his challenge for yourself–I loved it!) I’ve accepted his invitation to take a fresh look at the book of Ruth and I’ll share some of my own stories about my discoveries here this week. I’ll be reading the entire book each day of the week–getting to know the characters. Will you join us? It’s summer. You need a good read. You need a good Storyteller.
So pull up a chair and join the story circle. I love a good story and I would love to hear yours! The story is not complete with you.