The Power of a Story
One of my favorite parts of being in ministry is getting to meet new people all the time. One of my favorite parts of meeting new people, is getting to learn their story. I consider myself to be pretty good at reading people, and picking up on unspoken messages, but there is absolutely no way you can know who someone is, without hearing their story.
The depth and complexity of each unique story is beautiful, powerful, and impactful to the listener.
I was at dinner with a couple friends who didn't know each other. We started the conversation by them sharing their stories with each other. These were two men who have been believers for a long time, who have walked through a lot of ups and downs, and show the marks of Christ at work in their life. As they shared, I was blown away by a couple different things. First, when you really share your story, there is a great deal of vulnerability and humility needed. If you really explain where you've been and what you've walked through, you have to talk about the good and the bad, and that's not easy. Second, when you are listening to someone else's story, you are given a window into some really personal moments, that is an amazing gift. We should always treat that gift with kindness and compassion. Third, no matter how many times you've heard someone's story, when you hear it and really listen, it surprises you again, and it captures your heart again. I have heard much of both of these men's story before, but as I listened to them share, I was blown away again.
Sharing and listening to stories is a crucial part to living in community and really walking through life with other people. Whether you are introvert, or extrovert, you should be finding opportunities to do both. It will help you to see people in a new way, and you will learn so much about the power of people, and see the goodness of God at work in others.
My challenge to you this week is, find someone to share your story with, and ask someone to share their story with you, and then really listen, and prepare to be blown away!