We’ve spent some time discussing the importance of storytelling. Perhaps today we should consider the gift that lies within our stories.
Our wisdom born from experience over time can be water to thirsty people around us.
I found this on a blog called EchoStories:
Humans love stories. They help us translate the data in our brains into meaning. What does this mean in practical terms? Your life story is one of the most powerful assets you possess.
Many people are reluctant to tell their life story - either to their family, verbally, or in print - because they are worried about being seen as boring or self-centered. The fact is that your life story is the most interesting thing about you.
If you want people to empathize or under stand you, tell them a story. If you want them to learn what you’ve learned, tell them a story. If you want them to feel—even in some small way—what you’ve felt, tell them a story.
We all come from wildly disparate backgrounds, but we are united by our common experiences. We’ve all had broken hearts and big successes. We’re ultimately not interested in the what, but the why.
When you dig into the why of what you’ve done in your life, you transmit your values to the reader. You can’t dictate to others what they must believe, but if you can make them feel what you felt, you can convince them of the importance of your values.
You may, for example, want to encourage your grandchildren to be industrious; through story you can inspire them to dream big dreams and put their talents to work in bringing them to life. When you make people believe in your story, the resulting inspiration will help them incorporate new ideas and values into their own lives.
And that is why sharing our story of faith with those closest to us this Christmas can be a powerful gift.
Our prayer should be “How and to whom is this story a true gift? ”
May you find your story and live into it and may you wisely choose where to tell the story; it may just be the perfect gift for that special someone!
- Kevin O’Brien