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Blog: Lee Younger

Part of the Story

CCC Oak Ridge

This week our pastor is off across the Atlantic Ocean having an adventure in Spain. He is waking up to fair mornings in a rustic stone farmhouse out in the middle of a picturesque landscape of rolling green hills. Hundreds of people with longing hearts from countries all over this world will walk past his door today wondering if God is, and hoping they can find Him. Our dear brother will tell them of the Lord in their own language with all the compassion, humor and love that dwells in that remarkable heart of his. When all is said and done, this will be a week for the missionary record books filled with stories worth telling and retellling, again and again.

Do you ever wish you were part of some adventure like that one? Do you ever long to be part of the Story? Do you ever look at your own life wondering if it mattered in the spiritual scheme of things that you got up and did your thing today? This morning I woke up early, got out of bed and went to work. A bit later I took my car to the shop to get repaired, hung out with my two younger kids while the bug guy sprayed the house and then went back to work. Hmm. Doesn’t sound too adventurous, does it? And yet, I’m not so sure we can make that call.

Jesus said that if you want to be great in God’s kingdom, you have to become like little children and like servants; and they aren’t the ones who go off to war, fame and valor. He said there’s just about nothing more important than getting someone in need a cup of cold water. Paul said we should make it our ambition to lead a quiet life and mind our own business! He also said that the whole point of the church is to prove to invisible armies of spiritual forces just how wise and awesome God really is, and they sure do have to watch a bunch of normal, old, everyday lives! What if living our normal little lives with sincere faithfulness, genuine love and devotion to Jesus is the most adventurous thing we could possibly do? What if you are an essential character in the Great Story already? What if working your job, raising your kids or making your way through school is exactly the adventure He’s called you into, and living your plain-ole life with persistence and endurance by His strength winds up being one of the brave deeds of the children of men in the history of this world?

I’m re-reading the Lord of the Rings right now and I just finished the part where Sam and Frodo are almost to Mordor and Sam begins to reflect on the stories and songs of old. He says, “We shouldn’t be here at all, if we’d known more about it before we started. But I suppose it’s often that way. The brave things in the old tales and songs, Mr. Frodo: adventures, as I used to call them. I used to think that they were things the wonderful folk of the stories went out and looked for, because they wanted them, because they were exciting and life was a bit dull, a kind of sport as you might say. But that’s not the way of it... Folk seem to have been just landed in them, usually - their paths were laid that way, as you put it. But I expect they had lots of chances, like us, of turning back, only they didn’t.”

You, whoever you are, are right smack dab in the midst of a crucial point in the Great Story and no one can live your tale but you. Today you find yourself facing challenges and problems that were laid out for you alone and the adventure does not lie in the scope of the deed, but in simply seeing it through. Great or small, you have a part to play and the One who set the board is waiting for you to call out to Him for strength and guidance. Your calling is that of the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 16 which says, “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.” And one day, you’ll see that you were a character in the Tale, a hero in the Song.