Tuesday, February 1, 2011
STORY Is...(What it is-Part 3)
G.K. Chesterton once wrote said “I had always felt life first as a STORY---and if there is a STORY there is a STORY TELLER”.
We often dismiss the term “STORY” as pertaining to myth, legend, fairy-tales, or playing make-believe as a child, as if to infer that those things are not “real”. And in doing so, we have often dismissed one of the key ingredients necessary for following and being taught by Christ daily in faith - to have “childlike faith”. This, however, must not to be confused with childish ways. We all know deep within us that STORY is an essential God-designed teaching method for communicating eternal truths about life.
Jesus Himself quite often used the STORY form of Parables to TEACH eternal truths about the one true Kingdom we are all invited to be a part of and the grand STORY unfolding.
Here is a collection of 25 quotes that TEACH about the God breathed power of STORY through insight from various perspectives. I hope these truths help you better DEFINE what STORY is, which can in turn, if you apply that “childlike faith”, redefine how you Live your Story...
“If you are a Dreamer, come in; If you are a Dreamer, a wisher, a liar; a hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer...If you’re a pretender, come sit by my fire; For we have some flax-golden TALES to spin. Come In! Come In!”.
Shel Silverstein “Invitation” poem from book Where the Sidewalk Ends
“Sam: It’s like in the great STORIES, Mr Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were...those were the STORIES that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those STORIES had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding onto something.
Frodo: What are we holding onto, Sam?
Sam: That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo...and it’s worth fighting for...
Sam: I wonder if we’ll ever be put into songs or TALES...I wonder if people will ever say, ‘Let’s hear about Frodo and the Ring’. And they’ll say ‘Yes, that’s one of my favorite STORIES, Frodo really was courageous, wasn’t he Dad?’
Frodo: You’ve left out one of the chief characters - Samwise the Brave. I want to hear more about Sam’.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings: The TWO TOWERS movie
“In a STORY, the character wants something. Rudy wants to play football at Notre Dame, Harry wants Sally, Frodo wants to destroy the ring and so on. It’s true in every story, or else a story doesn’t make sense. If we don’t want something in our lives, our stories feel boring, long, meaningless and tired. We feel this way because we are sitting in the theater of our mind watching a story that isn’t getting started. Or worse, we are praying and asking God to give us a story while the entire time God is handing us a pen, telling us to write it ourselves. That’s why he gave us a will. So spend some time thinking about what you want with the year. Do you want to pay down the house, get into shape, deepen a relationship? Make your ambition clear and focussed. Choose two or three dominant desires and write them down...The idea is to create scenes this year you’ll remember for the rest of your life, and to invite others into the thrill of being alive. I often think of it as worship in the sense that God created this beautiful expanse as an exposition within which to live remarkable stories, and it’s our job to match the STORY to the expanse, to make use of it, to fill it with memorable scenes”.
Donald Miller Blog (1/1/10 and 1/5/10)
“You tell a STORY because a statement would be inadequate. When anybody asks what a story is about, the only proper thing is to tell him to read the story”.
“Myths are not by definition lies. The STORY of Christ is a ‘true myth, a myth that works on us the same way as the others, but a myth that really happened’.”
-Mark Eddy Smith
“God did not give Joseph any special information about how to get from being the son of a nomad in Palestine to being Pharaoh's right hand man in Egypt. What he did give Joseph was eleven jealous brothers, the attention of a loose and vengeful woman, the ability to do the service of interpreting dreams and managing people’s affairs, and the grace to do that faithfully wherever he was.”
"We do not find happiness by being assertive. We don't find happiness by running over people because we see what we want and they are in the way of that happiness so we either abandon them or we smash them. The Scriptures don't teach us to be assertive. The Scriptures teach us—and this is remarkable—the Scriptures teach us to be submissive. This is not a popular idea.”
- Rich Mullins on Joseph’s STORY and our Story too
“I believe that being successful means having a balance of success STORIES across the many areas of your life. You can't truly be considered successful in your business life if your home life is in shambles.”
- Zig Ziglar
“People have forgotten how to tell a STORY. Stories don't have a middle or an end any more. They usually have a beginning that never stops beginning.”
“If I’m gonna be a preacher one day, I gotta know the Bible front to back. I mean, you can’t help nobody if you can’t tell ‘em the right STORY”.
- Johnny Cash’s brother, Jack, in the movie WALK THE LINE
“Why does anybody tell a STORY? It does indeed have something to do with faith, faith that the universe has meaning, that our little human lives are not irrelevant, that what we choose or say or do matters, matters cosmically”.
“STORY is the primary way we impart what really matters to the next generation...Story is one of the most powerful ways we pattern our world and discover its meaningfulness. It goes beyond mere embellishment of a spiritual point to providing a nurturing form or substance for the God-hungry imagination, one that helps young people inhabit a narratable world”.
Sarah Arthur book The God-Hungry Imagination
“Since all the World is but a STORY, it were well for thee to buy the more enduring story, rather than the story that is less enduring”.
- Columba of Iona
“When people ask how we are doing, the first thing I always say is, ‘I want Maria back. I want my son Will Franklin not to have this as a chapter in his STORY. I want my children to be healthy, my family secure. I don't really care whose life has been touched or changed because of our loss’...It has been agonizing to choose to see God at work through the tears of losing my daughter. I have, however, experienced the kindness, sweetness, faithfulness, and redemptive heart of God. I believe none of my tears have been wasted”.
- Mary Beth Chapman commenting on the 2008 death of their adopted daughter Maria
“Don't tell fish STORIES where the people know you; but particularly, don't tell them where they know the fish.”
“All my STORIES are about the action of grace on a character who is not very willing to support it, but most people think of these stories as hard, hopeless and brutal...There is a certain embarrassment about being a storyteller in these times when stories are considered not quite as satisfying as statements and statements not quite as satisfying as statistics; but in the long run, a people is known, not by its statements or its statistics, but by the STORIES it tells”.
- Flannery O’Connor
“People create STORIES create people; or rather stories create people create stories”.
- Chinua Achebe
“STORY is the language of the Heart. After all, what’s the world’s favorite way to spend a Friday night? with a Story--a book, a favorite show, a movie...It goes far deeper than entertainment, by the way. Stories nourish us. They provide a kind of food that the soul craves...What if all the great Stories that have ever moved you, brought you joy or tears--what if they are telling you something about the TRUE STORY into which you were born, the Epic into which you have been cast? We won’t begin to understand our lives, or what this so-called gospel is that Christianity speaks of, until we understand the Story in which we found ourselves. For when you were born, you were born into an Epic, that has already been under way for quite some time. It is a STORY of beauty and intimacy and adventure, a Story of danger and loss and heroism and betrayal”.
John Eldredge book EPIC
“If history were taught in the form of STORIES, it would never be forgotten”.
“My STORY is this: I’ve fallen in love again with the hero of the story, and I’ll never be the same . Sometimes though, I must confess, I still love the storytelling more than I love story itself”.
“Our Songs and our STORIES do more than persuade others that an order exists: they build the house; they weave a world; they companion our listeners into the experience of such ordered cosmos”.
- Walter Wangerin, Jr.
“Our basic struggle, on a Sunday morning, revolves around the questions: Who gets to name the world? Who is authorized to tell the STORY of what is going on among us?”.
“How do I happen to believe in God?...Writing novels, I got into the habit of looking for plots. After awhile, I began to suspect that my own life had a PLOT. And after awhile more, I began to suspect that life itself had a plot”.
- Frederick Buechner
“So here is my question: Are you living your life in a way that is worth telling STORIES about? Maybe it is time to quit running and time to start chasing. Try something new. Take some risks. Start doing some things that are worth recounting in jaw-dropping detail. I think we owe it to our kids and grandkids...Too many of us pray as if God’s primary objective is to keep us from getting scared. But the goal of life is not the elimination of fear. the goal is to muster the moral courage to chase lions...Soren Kierkegaard went so far as to say that ‘boredom is the root of all evil’ because it means we’re refusing to be who God made us to be. If you’re bored, one thing is for sure: You’re not following in the footsteps of Christ”.
Mark Batterson book In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day
“Fix these WORDS of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. TEACH them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up”.
“I will open my mouth in PARABLES, I will utter hidden things, things from of old--what we have heard and known, what our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done”.