Anyone who has ever been a part of a church has a story to tell and the story we tell tells a lot about us.
Some tell stories of grace and support and growth.
Some tell stories of boredom and disconnect and departure.
Others tell stories of insult and offense and hurt.
The stories we tell are a narrative of our experiences. When we publicly share the events of our church history, we give a glimpse into our spirits. If our stories are sweet, it’s a clear indication that we had a good history in church and we are presently in a good spiritual place because of it. When our stories are bitter, our past has not been good, and our current spiritual condition is suffering as a result.
But anyone who has been part of a church has had both bad and good experiences in church. Upon which do we focus?
If your story features a crooked preacher, a lying leader, a gossiping deacon, or a corrupt Elder, you focus on the bad. In fact, through our stories, some of us reveal that we are deeply hurt, bitter and wounded. This is tragic. If your story features supportive leaders, honorable pastors, godly deacons and compassionate members, you focus on the good.
But interestingly, some who have been exposed to the same experiences tell different stories. Some who tell good stories have been brutally hurt in the church.
What’s the difference? While it is not good to compare ourselves to others, some choose to heal while others choose to remain hurt. And you can hear it in our stories.
You don’t necessarily choose your stories (some things happen to you) but you definitely choose the stories you tell.
If your stories reveal that you have been hurt – and we have all been hurt – find healing and the ability to forgive and move forward. Then your story will reveal a spirit that is whole.
What story do you tell about your church? It’s really more a story about your heart.