Jesus

Good Stories Need Conflict

I like hiking. Well I like being at a beautiful spot and I like the memory of hiking. But I hate the rest of it. I don’t like to be uncomfortable. Once I hit that point where I’m getting tired I’m done. Hiking is great until I’m tired, sweaty, and 5 miles away from the car and all I can think about is my couch and a cold drink. It’s always more fun in memory, but in the moment I would rather do something else.

I suspect that describes most of us in western culture. We so detest discomfort that we avoid it at all costs. We have made our lives as comfortable as possible. While I don’t think this was done with bad intentions I think it has had negative consequences on our walk with God. The second we run into a problem our gut reaction is to ditch God’s plan. We view the conflict in our lives as something to avoid at all costs.

What if that conflict is there to show us something? What if there is an amazing story God wants to tell in our lives that exists on the other side of the conflict we are desperately trying to avoid?

I believe the pursuit of comfort in our lives has made following God much harder. We view God as harsh for allowing conflict to enter our lives. But it’s that conflict we hate that brings about a good story in our life. It’s that conflict that makes our life something powerful that can changes those around us. We shouldn’t run from conflict, but rather trust God through it.

Although not easy, I have learned when conflict arises in my life, big or small, it is always too soon to give up on God. My gut reaction is to run the opposite direction and seek out comfort. However I remind myself that God’s plan is always better. And it’s always too soon to give up on Him.

I learned my first tough lesson in this years ago. I was going though some conflict and I was reading Donald Miller’s book “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years.” In his book Donald takes the idea of what makes a good story and compares it to what makes a good life. This challenged my western thinking of comfort as king and changed the way I thought of conflict.

This quote from the book has stuck with me through the years. Whenever I face conflict I remember this quote and think about what God is doing in my life.

“Somehow we realize that great stories are told in conflict, but we are unwilling to embrace the potential greatness of the story we are actually in. We think God is unjust, rather then a master storyteller.” Donald Miller

I now see conflict as bringing about a good story. I see it as making me more like Jesus. Do I like it? Rarely. But I know that a story absent of conflict is a story that is not worth telling. And I want to tell a good story. Not for my sake, not so people will remember me. But so that people will see Jesus in the way I live. After all Jesus went through conflict few of us will ever understand. And told us that if we are to follow Him then we will endure the same kind of conflict.

Jesus is trying to tell a beautiful story in each of our lives. But as in every good story there is conflict. Don’t run away from it, push through it. Trust that God is with you in it and will bring you through it. Trust that God is writing a beautiful story with your life. Trust that His way is always better than your way, even when it doesn’t seem like it. It’s always too soon to give up on God.

18 comments on “Good Stories Need Conflict

  1. Your amazing highlights are the anchor to my Christian walk. But, sometimes I can’t help but wondering if the Lord forgot that I”m still human? Now that you’ve mentioned about a book, I think He must be writing volumes of an encyclopedia from my trials. All is well though, for He is turning my scarves into stars!

    Thank you for reading my post!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Well done. It’s true we would rather avoid conflict in our culture. Yet, I don’t reccall a rose garden being promised to us. Of course, we will have trouble in this world. It is to be expected; however, it is our response that is key. Will we run to the Father, who can help? Will we run away from the only one who love and care for us?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “It’s always too soon to give up on God.” Love that sentence…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for sharing. I’ve actually been thinking on this topic a lot lately. Periodically in the Bible, we read about God refining us in the fire of affliction. Take Isaiah 48:10 as just one example: “See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.” NIV I’ve been thinking about how this ties in with what Max Lucado said in his book, “Just Like Jesus.” He basically said that God loves us just the way we are, but he loves us too much to leave us that way. He wants us to be just like Jesus. I think you’re right, and scripture really backs it up, that sometimes God allows certain things because he plans to work them out for our good, to make us better disciples and purer reflections of his light on this Earth. Thank you again for sharing. Looking forward to reading more of your writing in the future.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are right, God loves us where we are at, but He loves us too much for us to stay there. Much like the quote, it’s okay to not be okay, but it’s not okay to stay that way.

      God has a work He wants to do in our lives! Thanks for stopping by and adding to the conversation!

      Like

  5. Anonymous

    David’s daughter, Jen and her husband Derik twins were born 2 weeks ago, Edith and May. Edith, a trisomy 18 baby went to be with the Lord August 12. We were all blessed with the 12 days God gave her to us. The pain we see in the face of Jen and Derik is beyond what we can imagine. But in the midst we have seen God’s hand doing above what we could have ask or thought. We see their faith blossoming to a greater trust in their Lord Jesus Christ. Through their journey our lives have been blessed beyond measure. “Good Stories Need Conflict”

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Beverly Aubuchon

    The Anonymous is Dave and Bev Aubuchon

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Great point about the purpose of conflict in our lives, spiritual and otherwise! http://mitchteemley.com/2014/09/25/how-to-be-funny-part-two/

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I find this very encouraging! Thank you for sharing your journey and God led thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks for the awesome reminder!

    Like

  10. Anonymous

    Really enjoyed this blog!! So very true on all your points. 🙂

    Like

  11. Reblogged this on The View from 5022 and commented:
    “so that people will see Jesus in the way I live”

    Like

  12. crossroman

    Reblogged this on first resurrection.

    Like

  13. Pingback: Good Stories Need Conflict REBLOG [160a] | CROSSROMAN

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