Tuesday, February 11, 2014

{Storyline} Oh the places we go

In the road of life, we have to make decisions and turns. Some times we have to yield or stop or speed up. We have to wait our turn and merge when there is space. Moment after moment our journeys are being written.

Donald Miller uses Joseph's life to talk about positive and negatives turns we experience in life. These are the events and moments that'll make it on our storyline that illustrates our life. In Joseph's life there were many. He hears from God in a dream, was thrown in a well because he bragged to his brothers, taken into slavery, excelled in slavery and ran Potiphar's house, accused of rape and imprisoned, excelled in prison and ran the prison, interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh's confidants, waited for justice, made second in command.

Not everything that happened to Joseph was good, but God continued the work he had begun long ago in Joseph's life. Through all the negative and positive turns, Joseph's heart was changed.

But Joseph said to them, "Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.

And isn't that really the point of it all? To be changed from the inside out so we can make difference in the lives of those near us is what brings God glory. Our lives are the subplots in God's bigger story.

In this week's "Storyline" exercise, I listed some positive and negative turns in my life. All of them involved relationships, career-related decisions or health conditions.

I've been shaped by my parents' marriage, friendships, discovering I was good at telling other people's stories in print, deciding to follow Jesus, moving away to college, meeting my husband, getting married, church community, being diagnosed with diabetes, a season of infertility that lead to adoption, taking what seemed like financial risks when my husband started his own law practice and then a year later quitting my job to become a stay-at-home mom, adopting again, my father-in-law's unexpected death, expanding my skill set to include managing lake houses, and laying down our desire to adopt a third time.

And those are just the major moments. There are thousands of smaller moments that matter.

We don't live so we can mark major moments on life's timeline. We live to be changed and grow and make a difference and bring glory to the Maker of it all.

These stories of ours matter. The major milestones are worth marking. The everyday moments are worth remembering. The relationships sustain us. The decisions are made almost constantly, regardless of whether we're intentional about them.

"You didn't make yourself in your mother's womb, God did, and to say you aren't important is to say his creation lacks substance. Are you the center of the world? No, but the one who created the world created you as the pinnacle of that creation. Accept this fact and with it the responsibility to live a great story. Lives depend on it."
{Donald Miller in "Storyline"}

My life depends on my story being part of God's story, yes. But so do the lives sharing my house. And the ones down the street and the ones I keep up with on Facebook. How I live my story goes beyond me. I'm the character in my story, but I'm not alone. There are hard days and tough decisions and pleasant surprises and everyday joys. Ultimately, God will use it all -- even the rocky roads -- for good. For his good. For our good. And for their good. Wherever it is we go.

What positive and negative turns would be on your storyline? Have you seen God working good through those moments? Please share in the comments or link up a post of your own.

This is the second post in a 10-week series as I work through "Storyline" by Donald Miller with some friends. Read other posts in the series here. Next Tuesday we'll be talking about the theme of our lives. 

I'm also joining Jennifer Dukes Lee for #TellHisStory.

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  1. Oh I hope what I'm sharing tomorrow comes across the way it's intended. I don't know why but writing it had me in tears all evening. It's really been a weepy kind of day. But I'm loving this study. I love reading more about your story. And all of it reveals how AWESOME He is. I think that is what keeps bringing the tears. He is SO good. Thanks, friend, for leading us on this journey.

  2. SimplySaidMom2/12/2014 9:41 AM

    Hi Kristin! This is my first visit to your blog today by way of Simply Beth. Your words touched a place in my heart today, thank you for sharing them so openly and freely.

  3. KristinHillTaylor2/12/2014 10:23 AM

    Thanks for coming by and for your kind words!

  4. KristinHillTaylor2/12/2014 10:24 AM

    I'm so thankful you're in these Storyline pages with me. I can't wait to hear more of your story as it unfolds. It matters, friend. Much love to you today.

  5. Thankful God uses all of our story, the good, the bad and the in-between for His good. And we are "changed from the inside out" in the process..

  6. KristinHillTaylor2/12/2014 7:38 PM

    Me too, Mindy! Thanks for coming by!

  7. I love this concept. I want to read this book soon.

  8. KristinHillTaylor2/14/2014 2:15 PM

    I'm certain you'd enjoy the book, Kelcie!