The holiday season is upon us. It is the time of year when we gather to share meals and share stories.
I think it is important to share stories. Stories give us a glimpse into the soul. The work of God is often revealed in the stories we tell…and the stories we hear. When we pay attention and really listen, we tend to find ourselves being moved by the Spirit’s promptings.
God uses stories to move us toward Him and toward those around us. I’d like to share something I recently heard from an unlikely storyteller.
Consider God’s word in Proverbs 24:30-34.
“I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down. Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction. A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.”
How is it that this guy was able to look at some emerging weeds and thorns and arrive at the conclusion that the homeowner was a sluggard?!
I believe the Bible is teaching me that my external surroundings are telling the story of my internal situation.
The unlikely storyteller is the physical world around me. My house, my truck, my physical body—they are telling a story if I only I am willing to listen. The condition of my soul is on display in the condition of my outer world. Do I have the courage and humility to look around and evaluate what I see?
We cannot hide our laziness. We cannot ignore our gluttony, greed, pride, selfishness, fear, etc. We try. But the truth is that somehow and someway the spiritual health of our soul will be told in the story of our surroundings.
If you find yourself looking around and wishing you were part of a different story, I’ve got good news.
This Thanksgiving, I encourage you to stop and give thanks that Jesus graciously and faithfully enters into our stories. We are not left to ourselves to rewrite our own narratives. The good news is that Jesus meets us right where we are at. He changes us from the inside out.
As you turn the keys of your heart over to Jesus, a new chapter begins. May the stories we tell this holiday season point to Jesus, the faithful Author and Perfecter of our faith.