08 Mar A little story about destiny
Think back to your childhood memories and bedtime story telling. What was your favourite story? Why did you like it so much? Was it because the hero won in the end, the colourful illustrations in the book enchanted you or did you relate to one of the characters?
Create your own story
You don’t have to look far to find tons of stories. They can be read in books, magazines and blog articles, seen on the television and social media or heard on the radio and podcasts. They are everywhere, entertaining us daily whether fact or fiction. And you create your own stories too with thoughts and activities, and when you encounter other people. You recount stories and share the memories of them just as you did when you thought of your childhood fairytale. Stories help to keep memories alive by passing anecdotes down from generation to generation – although they can get distorted sometimes as bits are missed out, misunderstood or exaggerated.
You build on existing stories by expanding the adventures they carry. And when you think about it, you are creating your own life story every single day. Let me ask you, how’s it evolving so far?
I love telling stories and hearing them from someone who’s a master storyteller. Do you have a family member, teacher or friend who just seems to capture your attention every time they tell a tale? Some people are brilliant at bringing information to life, adding context to the characters or situation so that they relate more to you and have more impact. You have to admit it everyone loves a good story!
“If you are not the hero of your own story, then you’re missing the whole point of your humanity.”
Today I have a little story to tell you
Kick back, grab a juice or a snack and relax. It’s not a long story, but I want you to think carefully about where it’s leading and the underlying message you draw from it. Now this is a story that references a God but you don’t have to be religious, nor do you have support a Christian religion to learn from it. You will still (hopefully) gain a deeper understanding about life and the position you are in. Let me begin…
Right in the heart of America is an important town. It’s important because it’s slap bang in the middle of the continental landmass and it’s a town of extremes. The climate is either hot or cold, torrential rainfall or completely dry, windy or very still.
The high mountains in the north collect water as rainfall or snow that consequently cascades downhill, forming a river that meanders straight through the centre of the town.
Recently the town suffered a major crisis because the rain had poured heavily for a long period of time. The riverbanks burst close to the town’s edge, but thankfully the authorities sent in a number of coaches and performed an evacuation procedure. Most residents left in time, but a few refused to leave including one stubborn older man. ‘I’m not leaving, this is my home,’ he shouted at the authorities. ‘I believe in God and he will save me.’
The rain continued for a few more days and the water level rose to cover the ground floor of most houses. The authorities were extremely worried about the remaining residents so they sent in boats to evacuate those that had stayed. Everyone apart from the old man that is. He continued to shout ‘This is my town and I shall not be leaving. I have faith in God and he’ll do the right thing for me.’ Reluctantly the authorities left.
Sure enough, a couple of days later because the rain did not cease, the water lapped at the house roofs. The old man could be seen perched on top of his home legs dangled either side of the roof. The authorities feared for his life so they sent in a helicopter. As a rescue aider lowered down on a rope from the helicopter to reach the old man he could hear him shouting ‘Leave me be, I am not going, God will save me.’ The old man waved the helicopter away and once again the rescue mission was aborted.
Unfortunately, I’m sorry to say that the rain did not cease and the old man was swept away.
The story continues and the old man’s soul went to a place where souls go. He found himself in front of a pair of almighty gates and he was angry. He banged fiercely on the gates demanding to be let in. Eventually, the gates creaked open and there stood St. Peter who was in charge of all souls passing through the gate. He had a whole manner of qualifications including a great understanding of human behaviour. Peter listened to the old man shouting, picking up on his anger and frustration and said quietly ‘Looking at it from your point of view I can see where you are coming from…’ But he was cut down as the old man commanded to see God.
Peter picked up the divine penthouse hotline to God. ‘Sorry to trouble you only I have a rather irate gentleman down here who says you’ve let him down and is adamant that he needs to see you – what shall I do?’
‘Send him up’ said God and so the old man was allowed to enter a celestial lift that ascended for what seemed like an eternity. Eventually the doors opened and the old man stood face to face with God. ‘You let me down big time, I had faith in you, I thought you would save me and you let me down’ he cried.
‘What on earth do you mean I let you down?’ God replied calmly. ‘Have you not learned how to use the gifts I gave you? Your five senses, your evolving brain and all the resources in the world? I sent coaches to evacuate you followed by boats – I even organised a helicopter. In the next life maybe you will learn to take more responsibility for yourself.’
There you go. What are you thinking now? What would you have done? This is a story by Julian Russell and adapted slightly from The Magic of Metaphors book.
You can take all kinds of meanings from this story but it has a powerful message. There will be opportunities and chances to help you but ultimately you are in charge of the outcome of a situation and you can change things in order to alter the outcome of how you feel and of your actions.
“Confidence is knowing who you are and not changing it a bit because of someone’s version of reality is not your reality.”
Choose the life you want to lead
I’d love to hear what you thought of this story and what it means to you. Have you ever been in an overwhelming situation where you had choices but you didn’t know what would be the best one to choose? What external factors were available that could help you? What did you do in the end and what was the outcome?
Please do connect with me and if you have you own story to share, I’d welcome the chance to hear it. You can find me via the social media links below or feel free to send me an email by clicking here.
Until the next blog article have a fun filled, flow filled and story filled week.