There is something in all of us that desires to live a great story. We want to have a part in a story that matters. We want to do something that will count. We want a legacy that will live beyond our death.
But how do we ensure that happens?
Some of us fixate on our own stories.
We try to get the most out of life. We seek to accomplish the most we can. We seek to achieve what others could not. We seek to do more, shine brighter, so that when we die our last thought will be “I lived a fulfilled life”.
But of course the problem with this kind of life is that we may never have enough. We may never accomplish enough. There is always more that could be done.
Some of us fixate on the story of our families
“Family is everything”, we say. We love our family’s history. And we care about our family’s future. We want to do everything we can to help our family be successful. Our legacy is directly tied to the future flourishing of the next generation.
But families can be fickle. The hard work and success of one generation is easily wasted by the next. And what one generation wants for a family is not necessarily what the next generation will want. There is no guarantee that the story of our families will turn out how we would like it. There is no guarantee that our legacy will be past down.
Some of us fixate on the story of our nation
Individual stories and family stories are fine. But some of us are attracted to a much greater story. The story of our nation. That is the story the engulfs our lives. In our minds we feel like we know how the story should go.We feel good when the story is going the way we think it should. And we feel scared and anxious when the story seems to go off course.
Of course, here too there is problem. We have little control over what happens in our nation. We can do our best to get the people we want in office, but that does nothing to ensure the nation will go in the direction we believe it should go.
Jesus understands that we long to be part of a greater story– a story that matters. He made us that way. He also knows that the stories of individuals, families, or nations (or anything else), can’t give us what we desire.
Sin runs through everything and corrupts every story.
Thus we need a better story. A story that can’t be corrupted. A story that has the power to sustain hope. A story that will last. A story we can depend on. A story that can not fail.
This is the story of Jesus.
Jesus is the hero of history. At the end of time Jesus alone will receive all glory, honor, and praise. His will be the story that will be retold and never forgotten.
This is why Jesus invites us to give up our story, and enter into his story.
When we follow Jesus we are freed from trying to get the most out of our own life. Because we no longer have to strive for our own success, but can now live out of his success.
When we follow Jesus we are freed from trying to ensure our legacy will be carried out by future generations. Because Jesus brings us into his family, a family whose legacy is guaranteed to never be forgotten.
When we follow Jesus we are freed from putting our hope in the story of our nation. Because Jesus invites us into his nation, “The Kingdom of God”. The only perfect nation that will last forever.
Through our relationship to Jesus we become part of the greatest story. The story that is able to ensure for us the significance we long for.
That is why the story of Jesus is the only story worth giving up all other stories to be a part of.