These last few months I have been thinking a lot about our stories.  Stories as a Christian handed down for many years until they went into print, the Bible.  Our country’s stories:  the stories of us as immigrants, our history as a country and the history we are living each day.  The story of the history of St. Anthony’s Spirituality Center as we look forward to celebrating our 100 Years.  The importance of our family stories that we hopefully hear from our grandparents and parents to be passed to our children and grandchildren. Stories we share at family gatherings, around the campfire, and at the dinner table.

“Telling stories is as basic to human beings as eating.  More so, in fact, for while food makes us live, stories are what make our lives worth living. “ by Richard Kearney

Think about it. Once our necessities are taken care of, we spend more of our free time immersed in story than doing anything else. We watch movies and television; video game, books, music, art, performances of plays, facebook posts and share each other’s stories.  We have done this since we learned to communicate with one another and figured out how to scratch drawings on a cave wall.

So why do stories help us?  I think at times it helps us escape our routine in life.  Through stories we can be entertained and communicate to others what we value and what is possible.  We pass on our own history to remember for the next generation. Stories connect us to one another. By listening to stories we see the world through someone else’s eyes. By sharing through stories, we are better able to live together.

Jesus was one of the greatest storytellers.  He shares with us the parables and experiences of his life that give examples for us to live. Other scripture writers tell the stories of Jesus that can us.

We use stories to answer the great unanswerable questions. Why am I here? What is the purpose of my life? What does it mean to be human? Stories bring order and meaning to the chaos and randomness of life. A story always has a beginning, middle and end, since we don’t know how our own personal story will end. Isn’t our life really a search for our own story?

What story would you like to share with Jesus, your family or your friends and help bring about the kingdom and make a difference in our world?

“To be a person is to have a story to tell”. — Isak Dinesen