Written by guest blog writer, Kristen Padilla:
Have you ever written your autobiography? What would you say if you were to write yours today? Perhaps you would write about when and where you were born, what your family was like then and now, if you were poor or rich, what your community was like, and where you went to church.
And perhaps you have had significant events in your life that you’d want to mention—a death, a divorce, a move, an award, or a graduation.
Tell me, after reading your autobiography, would I know you? Would I know, truly, who you are and what your purpose in life is? Would these details give me your story?
If the character Shasta in C.S. Lewis’ The Horse and His Boy book in The Chronicles of Narnia series wrote his autobiography, he would say that he never knew his father and mother but instead was raised by a man whom mistreated and used him. This man was willing to sell him to a stranger one day so he escaped and was chased by lions, endured many dangers in a place called Tashbaan and had to spend the night in a cold graveyard. In fact, this is the account that Shasta gave his companion in the night when his companion asked Shasta to tell him his sorrows.
But what Shasta didn’t realize was that it was Aslan, the Great Lion, the One who had given his life on a stone only to be resurrected, who was his companion that night. It was then that Aslan told Shasta his story: how he had forced Shasta to join with Aravis, how he had comforted him among the graves, how he drove the jackals away while he slept, how he gave the horses Shasta and the others were riding new strength to reach King Lune in time, and how he “was the lion you do not remember who pushed the boat in which you lay, a child near death, so that it came to shore where a man sat, wakeful at midnight, to receive you.”
Who was Shasta? He was the one whom Aslan had rescued, protected, loved, and provided for. Aslan’s story became Shasta’s story. And Shasta, after hearing Aslan’s story and seeing his face “slipped out of the saddle and fell at his feet. He couldn’t say anything but then he didn’t want to say anything, and he knew he needn’t say anything.”
Shasta’s story is fictional, but the story it represents is real. You see, we don’t get the full picture of who we are until we find who we are in God’s story. His story tells us why we were created, why we experience heartache and emptiness (sin), how much He loves us, how we can be made whole, forgiven, and find everlasting peace, and how our lives have meaning in our community and in our world. The irony is that when we get lost in His story, we find our stories; we find who we truly are and our true purpose.
The myStory Bible study is written with the intention to help you get lost in His story. The study explores five parts of the story of the Christian: myLife (our creation), mySin (our disobedience), myResponsibility (our life after Christ), myCommunity (our part in the body of Christ), and mySavior (our final redemption).
We all have a story to tell. Our stories can be like Shasta’s was at the beginning, told from a humanistic perspective in which are lives are defined by random events and sadness; or our stories can be about what God has done in our lives and how He is being glorified in them. So tell me, what is your story?
Kristen Padilla, a graduate of Beeson Divinity School (M.Div.), is a wife, mother and writer. To learn more about her, her family, and her ministry, visit kristenrpadilla.com.