Living With a Story
Scripture Reading — Philippians 4:4-9
The peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
—Philippians 4:7 —
In contrast to the franticness that can be seen in people living without a sense of God’s story in their lives, the followers of Jesus can live with a deep, lasting sense of peace.
Some of our stories actually start pretty badly, with broken families, bodies, and emotions that experience deep pain—and often terrible kinds of abuse. Even so, we can still know that our Storyteller has promised to work everything out for good by the end of the story. And that means that if everything’s not yet all right, then we’re not yet at the end.
As we live in the part of the story between our brokenness today and God’s “happily ever after” someday, we can know that every chapter of our story will somehow serve the purpose that God wrote into our lives from the very beginning.
When we live with a story like that, we are changed. Instead of feeling the cold desperation of scrambling for everything, we can relax. Instead of trying nervously to achieve some success right now, we can allow God’s Holy Spirit to make us new over time. Because we know that the end of our story will be a good one, we can let God create his fruit in us: his love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, and self-control (see Galatians 5:22-23). And through it all, God’s peace surrounds us like a shield.
What kind of story are you living now?
Lord Jesus, please loosen the grip by which we hold to our dreams and fears. Help us to cling to you, learning to enjoy your embrace. In your name, Amen.