GOD OF THE STORY

I don’t know about you, but I enjoy watching movies. A great story line is irresistible, especially the kind that keeps me guessing all the way to the end. I love that feeling of awakening, when all of sudden everything just clicks and you think to yourself, “Wow! I get it!”

I think people love stories so much because they connect with them in very deep and profound ways. We see ourselves in them. We connect with the emotion and the drama. Even if we know how the story ends, we still become captured in the moment. But what if you don’t know how the story ends? You’ll find yourself in the middle of the story wondering if this is all there is going to be. How will the story end?

Jesus spoke a remarkable and fascinating statement. He said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” The Message paraphrase of John 10:10 puts it this way, “I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.” Jesus is inviting you into something so much larger than just getting into heaven when you die. Jesus is inviting you into the kingdom kind of life now—a life that is whole and free, forgiven and redeemed, restored and renewed. Jesus didn’t come to give you a religion, or a set of beliefs; He came to set you free, not only from something, but also to something. You’ve been set free so that you can truly, truly live in the here and now, not just someday, but somewhere else.

Faith in Jesus is what you are experiencing and is not the end of just another story. Your life is a grand story, with many chapters. Therefore, no matter what chapter you are in right now, there is another one coming. Whatever you are going through in life right now, know that the message of Jesus is: that whatever has previously affected you is not the end of the story. God has the final word.

Your life is a part of a much larger story. Your life matters. It matters to God. Every day a story is being told and you are a part of it. When you are tempted to dwell on the past, or even the present, remember this is not the end of the story. God is the God of the story—including this chapter, and the next.

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