Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Story

Reflecting on the past yesterday, as well as preparing for teaching a lesson entitled "journey of faith," has got me thinking about my own story. We all have a story to share, a story about our life journey thus far. We are part of a story that God is shaping in our lives, a story that He is revealing to us and guiding us upon.

I recently went to see the film Atonement with Katie, which deals with our choices in life and how those choices can radically change a person's story. It's an aesthetically beautiful film, but it also deals with some deep issues about story and reality. Without spoiling the film, the final 15 minutes focus on the perception of story, how memory and history intertwine, and how one creates meaning out of past experiences.

This film experience, combined with a desire to teach students both about God's story for our lives, has caused a great deal of reflection about where God has led me thus far in my own faith journey. From being adopted by my parents, who raised me in a Christian environment, to my junior high experience of struggling socially, to my high school experience of being called into a lifetime of ministry, to my college experience of growing immensely in my faith and view of God, to my current "emerging adult" experience in a brand new culture at a brand new church.

I think this is why I appreciate the book of Genesis so much. The majority of Genesis can be divided between three men's life stories: Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph (with a great deal of overlap). In all three unique stories, God is actively working in each man's life and drawing them closer to Himself in unique and timely ways. Abraham faithfully follows God in all circumstances; Jacob wrestles with God constantly; Joseph hears God in dreams and struggles to remain pure in the midst of trials and pain. They each have unique stories, but all have God actively working to shape their narrative.

Tonight, I'll share my story with my junior high students and invite them to see the story that God is creating with their lives.

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