Go to any event or get together, and you’ll hear something along the lines of “what’s your story?” Whether it’s asking what your job is, where you’re from, what your relationship status is…whatever. We get the basic questions to start and then as we get to know people better, we get into more of the details. What did you do before that? What do you want to do? Where are you going? What’s your family like? Why don’t you…? When did you decide…? What can’t you eat?!
Personally, I love hearing a person’s story and think we should all keep sharing with each other. It allows us to connect, relate, and encourage. We learn from others and are inspired. But sometimes, the story stops us.
We hide from our stories or get stuck on one part of it. Whether it’s a failure or a hardship, we get tired of sharing that story yet feel it’s the only true story to tell. We convince ourselves that we’re lying if we don’t include it, so we either avoid people altogether or share more than we should. Instead of connecting, relating, and encouraging, we drown out the rest of our story with just one part of it.
So often in our minds we let a section, sentence, or chapter of our lives become THE story. For example, I could just be the girl who has allergies or the girl who has had a weird string of job troubles (or a number of other unfortunate things). At certain points in my life, that felt like all I would ever be or at least, all I seemed to talk about. Admittedly, those things used to take up a lot of my time and energy and understandably so. During said seasons when I was trying to figure out my health or trying to find a job it was miserable and exhausting. But I couldn’t figure out how to be anything other than that struggle.
The trick is to learn to tell your story without getting caught up in all of the subplots. I’m not saying you need to run from your story or ignore the parts that weren’t pretty. The hardships do have impact, but they do not have to be the only story we tell with our words or actions. Your story keeps moving if you let it.
Maybe you are in the thick of a subplot or maybe you don’t know what you want your story to be about. We’ve all been damaged, lost, hopeless, and heartbroken. Don’t let that stop you from living out an incredible story. There’s so much more in store–there’s more to the story than just this chapter. You have a bigger story to tell.