I usually keep a funny story handy to tickle my friends if they need tickling. Lately my favorite comes from Zig Ziglar.
A teacher asks her class of six-year olds: “Did anyone do anything really fun this weekend?”
Little Johnnie’s hand shoots up. “Me, me, me!”
“What did you do this weekend, Johnny?”
“My daddy and me went fishing and we caught 75 fish and they weighed 75 pounds each.”
“Johnny, are you sure?”
“Yes, m’aam,” the confident youngster responded. “My daddy is a good fisherman and I’m even better than him.”
The teacher thought she should instruct the young man about telling the truth so she says, “Listen to my story Johnny and tell me what you think.
“This morning as I was walking to school I looked behind me and saw a giant grizzly bear running towards me. I took off like lighting but he was gaining on me. Just before he caught me to eat me, a little yellow dog, who must have weighed eight pounds, streaked out of nowhere, jumped on that bear’s head, threw him to the ground and killed him.
“He saved my life. Now Johnny, tell me, do you believe my story?”
The youngster didn’t miss a beat. “Yes, m’aam. I sure do. That was my dog that did that!”
Love that story.
The Story In Our Heart
Johnny lived in a world that he had constructed in his head so his interpretation of events had to fit into that story.
In reality, all of us are acting out a story that we’ve constructed in our heads and hearts. Husbands and wives look at the same incident and see two different things because of their background, their personality, their hopes and dreams or lack thereof.
Stop and think a minute. What is your story? What is the narrative you’re living by? Is it based on reality?
This poses a problem. Others around you are living different stories and you’re living with them. We all want to be the star of the story but there are not enough lines to go around in the play. On a basketball team where everyone wants to shoot, the stories come into conflict.
How can we accord our stories?
1. Each one of us should put his narrative in question. Telling Hitler that he’s right helps no one. He’s dangerous. Is my way of seeing this really correct?
2. Talk to each other. Listen to each other’s heart. Really love that person by trying to understand her version of life.
3. Find your role in the story. Don’t try to be the star singer if you can’t sing. How do I know? Well …there are ways to find out.
4. Realize that the story isn’t about us. It’s about the Lord Jesus. We’re humongously individualistic. But, one of the most gifted men who ever lived said, « You are dead to sin and alive to God. That’s what Jesus did. » (Rom. 6 :11, The Message) Our real story is in Him.
How do you do that? Consider:
a) your gifts. What do you do well, really?
b) open doors. Not all them are for you but these could indicate God’s direction.
c) Passions. Analyze your passions to see if they are really realistic, then try to choose where your heart leads. Do not ignore open doors that you might not be so excited about, though. Sometimes we must do what we must do in order to do what we really want to do.
5. Devour God’s Word and pray. Each one of us was created for a reason. We’re not an accident and our story is vitally important, even if we think we’ve only got a bit part. In God’s Word we see what we should be doing. We evaluate our character, actions, and service by the way He shows us to act.
In prayer and by the Holy Spirit, that personal story becomes distinct to us. We hear His voice as we move closer. Then we ask Him for strength and wisdom to conform our story to His story for us, even if it isn’t easy.
Most of us aren’t created to be super-heroes. We’ve got parts that seem small but are actually vitally important.
In the story of the Lord of the Rings Sam, Frodo’s faithful companion on his quest, speculates that their adventure might be made into a story starring Frodo.
“Still, I wonder if we shall ever be put into songs or tales. We’re in one, of course, but I mean: put into words, you know, told by the fireside, or read out of a great big book with red and black letters, years and years afterwards. And people will say: “Let’s hear about Frodo and the Ring!” And they will say: “Yes, that’s one of my favorite stories. Frodo was very brave, wasn’t he, dad?” “Yes, my boy, the famousest of the hobbits, and that’s saying a lot.”
“’It’s saying a lot too much,’ said Frodo, and he laughed, a long clear laugh from his heart. Such a sound had not been heard in those places since Sauron came to Middle-earth. To Sam suddenly it seemed as if all the stones were listening and the tall rocks leaning over them. But Frodo did not heed them; he laughed again.
“’Why, Sam,’ he said, ‘to hear you somehow makes me as merry as if the story was already written. But you’ve left out one of the chief characters: Samwise the stouthearted. “I want to hear more about Sam, dad. Why didn’t they put in more of his talk, dad? That’s what I like, it makes me laugh. And Frodo wouldn’t have got far without Sam, would he, dad?”‘
“’Now, Mr. Frodo,’ said Sam, ‘you shouldn’t make fun. I was serious.’
“’So was I,’ said Frodo, ‘and so I am.’”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers
Why don’t you take a minute and see if you can piece together the story you’re telling yourself. Does it match up with the story that God is telling about you? Can you get excited about it, even if you’re not the star?
Are you telling a story about someone who is worthless when God says you’re so valuable that He was willing to give His precious Son for you? Are you talking about someone who can’t when God says you can through Christ?
“The root cause of almost all people problems is the basic communication problem – people do not listen with empathy. They listen from within their autobiography.” – S.R. Covey
Reader Responses To the Healing Coffee Stain
I do have a story about the Lord’s healing power that I would like to share with you, but it’s quite long, and, although I’ve told it many times to whoever will take the time to sit and listen, I’ve never tried to write it down. The next time you’re in Longview I would like to tell it to you. The short version of the story is that before my daughter was born we were told that she would be severely retarded to the point that we wouldn’t be able to care for her at home, but through the Lord’s amazing grace she was healed, and this past year she graduated from high school as the valedictorian of her class, and she is now attending Baylor University where she is on the dean’s list. There is much more to the story than that, but the bottom line is that Lord does heal, and I thank Him every day for all that he does.
The Lord is good!
You asked for a documented “divine healing”. In 1999, God healed me of breast cancer. I took no cemo or radiation. Went one week for mamogram….had to go back the next week due to finding a 2.5cm cancer. During the week before going back I stayed in prayer and fasting.
The night before going to the second screening I, once again, entered my quiet place to pray. This time it was different…..there was a peace I hadn’t felt before. I entered prayer by Thanking Jesus for the years he had given me. Then I told him, and I meant it, “that if any glory or praise could come to Him from me having cancer then His will be done; BUT if it was an attack from Satan then HEAL MY BODY, in Jesus Name. I reminded I had two sons HE had given me and a NON Christian husband who would raise them without Jesus.
The next day on the way to the Doctor…….I still had the peace from God. As I was turning in parking lot to park……the spirit told me to remember David. I said, from the children’s story, the David defeated a Giant. Then the Spirit said to me……..NO I DEFEATED THAT GIANT AND TODAY I WILL DEFEAT THE GIANT OF CANCER in your body!!! And HE did just that. I told the receptionist, nurse, radiologist that God had healed me. They smiled and said well let’s just find out. Could not find ANYTHING!!! It was GONE completely. That was in 1999 and it’s 2014 and still cancer FREE!!! To God be the Glory!!!!! Psalms 91
I will try to say this in few words but this is an area that is not discussed in a fast response. My husband was sick for 10 years and without knowing him you just can’t understand how much of a fighter he is….quit is not a word he uses!!!
I say “was” sick accurately because God did deliver him when the surgeons were saying that another surgery could kill him. He went through 7 surgeries in 10 years. The big key I saw with the journey we both were on was that the question was not, “God, why are you not healing Gary?” The question was, “God please show us where our foot is on the hose to receive your healing.” We never felt that God did not want to heal Gary. We knew that our spiritual understanding was clouded in some aspect so that we were not receiving.
Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. So somewhere our faith was lacking….aka we were wrongly dividing the Word in this category of healing. That began a tremendous journey with the Spirit of God teaching our spirit. We almost entirely quit listening to others interpretations of the scriptures and just relied on God to teach our spirit and WOW!!!!He did not disappoint. My husband is a living example that GOD IS READY, WILLING AND ABLE TO HEAL. Praise His Holy Name! Your Sister in Christ, Nancy