What’s Your Story?

When I was a boy, I was big. Despite my size, I had great hands and a good arm. But none of that mattered when I put on my helmet and shoulder pads because the coach only saw big. I got in line with the boys trying out for quarterback and wide receiver, but he moved me to the offensive line and told me that the only time I got to touch the ball was if there was a fumble. And if there was a fumble, I was only allowed to fall on the ball – never, ever, never, ever, never try to pick it up.

Note the discontented #63 who is not #12 or #88

I remember one game, we were losing late and the coach called a screen to my side of the field. The play developed and I ran ahead to block. I couldn’t see the action behind me, but we kept moving downfield – no whistle, so I kept blocking. As I approached the end zone, something strange must have happened and I saw the ball in front of me at about the 5 yard-line. I wasn’t engaged with a defender at the time, so nature took over and I grabbed the ball and ran into the end zone. An offensive lineman’s dream. I scored the winning touchdown!

Everyone was cheering and crowding around me… except my coach.

At the ensuing practice, my coach yanked my facemask and pulled me all over the field while yelling, “You had one job. One job! Fall on the ball!” I ran suicides for hours and then a drill where another coach would throw a ball and I had to plop on it.

Fair? Maybe… maybe not. But it is a part of my story.

 

We are all living a story.

 

I believe stories have power. I believe that a good story, well-told can change the world.

 

There are five basic elements that a story must contain:

  • characters
  • setting
  • plot
  • conflict
  • them

 

Let’s take the Bible. It is a story book – a love story between the characters of God and Man, with Satan thrown in as an antagonist. The setting is three-fold: Heaven, Hell, and Earth. And the plot is played out over several thousand years as man demonstrates his inability to achieve holiness. The Old Testament points out continual conflict, usually brought about by the weakness and folly of man. And the New Testament shares Jesus the Savior and his atoning sacrifice as the theme and resolution of the story.

Just like he did in the Bible, God is weaving a story in and around each one of us. All of our stories are different but they will all contain the basic elements of story and they are all worth telling.

Here are seven things experience has taught me about story:

You are not the author of your story – Of course, you have input on the action – often through human fault, weakness, and disobedience. But God is writing your story and mine.

You can alter the plot – Twists and turns happen in stories. If you are dissatisfied with your story as it is being written, consult the author and look down a new path.

There will be conflict of some kind – Conflict is not a potential, it is an assurance.

Your story can be used for good – No matter how unexceptional you think your story is, remember that the author is the preeminent best-seller.

You may not be the main character of your story – For every quarterback on the football field there are five linemen. Just like when I was a boy, I did not get chosen to be the quarterback or wide receiver of my story. I am made to block for a twelve-year-old little girl.

You may not like your story – Loss, heartache, and pain may make your story seem unpalatable. But that doesn’t make it any less your story.

The resolution of a believer’s story will not take place here – For the believer, the story remains unresolved until he or she hears, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

Although you are not writing your story, you have three very important roles to play:

  • Pay attention to how those elements that make up your story come together.
  • Decide how your story can be used to benefit others.
  • Share your story as often as possible to help as many people as possible.

 

 

Your story matters and deserves to be told.

Whybrows?

I’ve got some complaints. First, why on earth would God install a worthless organ that does nothing besides rupture and cause complications? My appendix has yet to burst, but we are all ticking time bombs just waiting for the that day.

Consider this:

735,000 Americans have heart attacks each year.

680,000 Americans have appendicitis annually.

We know the purpose and necessity of the heart. Further, most of those heart attacks are preventable through diet and proper attention. But we can do nothing about our appendix and we don’t need it anyway. What’s up with that?

While we are examining the superfluous, what is the purpose of eyebrows? Seriously? If you look that up, you’ll only get hypothetical channeling of sweat and facial expressions. Facial expressions – seriously? What would we possibly be if we couldn’t furl our brows, knit our brows, or raise an eyebrow?

Just for giggles, watch this little girl discover her eyebrows.

 

And let’s analyze the other “purpose”. Unless you have a unibrow, what good is it to have them separated – leaving a gaping hole in the middle for sweat to pour through? They are as worthless as a bow-legged goalie.

So, the only actual functional eyebrow is the unibrow – that people pluck, wax, and shave to get rid of because no one wants to get caught with an unsightly unibrow.

 

When I was a boy, my hair was so blond that my eyebrows were nearly invisible. In fact, I’ve been told that I checked the mirror often for them and wouldn’t believe I had eyebrows at all. My hair has darkened over the years and sometime in my early forties, I was sitting in the barber’s chair when out of the blue, she asked, “Do you want your eyebrow hair trimmed?”

We were friends until the point where she crossed that line. I silently pondered her question, finally deciding that she wouldn’t have asked if I didn’t need them trimmed and I elected to have her do so.

But this caused a stirring of several questions. Why do they grow now? Why does God mock us with ridiculous extra hair as we age? I bought a shaver to take care of God’s little joke from now on. It has a guard so that I won’t cut them too close and most of the time I remember to check it.

Then one day, I discovered a purpose for eyebrows!

As with many scientific discoveries, it happened quite by accident. A check in the mirror showed many crazy hairs and I pulled out the shaver – you guessed it, without the guard. In an instant, my right eyebrow was gone. I stood there looking at myself in disbelief just like when I was a boy.

Once one is gone, you pretty much have to shave the other to even it out.

And there it is!

The purpose of eyebrows is to keep people from looking at you like you are a complete moron. Because when they are gone, people sure do stare.