Let Them Tell Their Story

The Rev

April 24, 2018

Life

1 Comment

This week I had the privilege of sitting down with an amazing teacher. She had just taught in a morning gathering I lead called, Merge. We were meeting for me to provide feedback so that she could continue to grow and improve in her skills as a teacher and communicator. As we talked she said, “You know, I think in narrative.”

I think in narrative.

That really struck me. Don’t we all love stories? A good story can capture your attention and make you see the world differently. I think that’s part of the reason that Jesus told parables, he knew that a good story could flip the world on its head.

Storytelling is an art. Some people are great storytellers, others not so much. Yet, we all tell stories.

In my neighborhood there’s a group of folks that gather around fire pits in the summer for “Fireball Fridays.” Yes, you guessed it Fireball whiskey is ever present (some of us bring good beverages) but that’s not really the point of the meeting at the fire pit. The real purpose of that gathering is the telling of stories (even though nobody would articulate it that way). We sit and listen to story after story and we laugh and cry. There is such beauty in those times. When the weather turns from fall to winter, we mourn the loss of these gatherings. We wait with hopefulness for the times to come in the summer.

We long for these times because we get to tell stories.

I have recently fallen in love with Psalm 107. It begins like this…

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.
Let the redeemed of the Lord tell their story—

It goes on to tell story after story in the form of a poem of the redeemed. It tells of how people were saved from the desert, prison, the storm and others.

The beginning has been in my mind for about a week now, “Let the redeemed tell their story…”

I was scanning my Twitter newsfeed today and came across a tweet that grabbed my attention, Dan White Jr wrote, “Preaching in the New Testament was primarily dialogical but our Western preaching is monological.”

Let the redeemed of the Lord tell their story. 

So much of the communication that happens in most of our churches is from the front and the people are largely receivers. Yet, it seems that by doing things this way we are are missing much of what the body of Christ has to offer.

On Sunday nights in my home our missional community gathers for dinner, Scriptures, prayer, and communion. It’s fantastically beautiful. As we open the Scriptures together we tell stories. We connect the Scriptures to our lives and our histories. I teach and give perspective but as a congregation from youngest to oldest we are involved by telling stories to one another. We weep together and laugh together and tease one another all over the Scriptures.

Let the redeemed of the Lord tell their story.

I love that this teacher I met with “thinks in narrative.” This is why she is an amazing teacher.

Through narrative truth connects.

The redeemed are compelled to tell their story. There is something in us that has to tell the story. We must tell the story of God’s goodness to us.

What’s your story? What good things have you seen God do? I want to hear your story. 

I have launched a podcast called, “Be Awesome. Don’t Suck.” If you want to hear more about what I’m thinking about life and how to live it to the full check it out: Be Awesome. Don’t Suck.

The Rev

I am a pastor with the Antioch Movement. I am hopeful that the kingdom of God can expand in an organic and missional way in the local church. My journey includes an amazing bride, Amy, along with two kids, Ethan and Libby. Living life alongside of these three amazing people reminds me daily of the necessity of the subversive mission of my King and his Kingdom. I hold a Masters of Divinity from Michigan Theological Seminary. Before launching a church planting movement I served as Assistant Pastor at Grace Chapel in Farmington Hills, MI and with Cru.

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