It can feel like our lives are a book with pages torn or climactic chapters that extend much longer than it feels is necessary. The book I just read by Kenneth Boa called Rewriting Your Broken Story talks about rewriting these broken parts of our story with eternity in mind. Meaning there’s hope, friend. Your story can be rewritten by living with an eternal perspective and here are five ways how:
Define your life backwards and then live it forwards. (pg. 59)
Most of us live our existence unplanned, even the planners in life. We may plan our anniversary trip to Hawaii with exhaustive detail, already living in the future moment to think about planning for this vacation. But most of us don’t plan for eternity with this careful detail. And how we view the end can help us plan our todays.
Let’s decide now where we want our lives to be at the end of our journey on this earth. And let’s decide now what would give meaning to our lives if we were on our deathbeds reminiscing over life.
Eternity should shift our thinking of people for no person is ever a mere mortal as C.S. Lewis would say. (pg. 63)
“Remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to today may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be tempted to worship, or else the horror and corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.”-C.S. Lewis
What Lewis was getting at is a striking point, guys. He was saying there are no ordinary people. What we see may seem plain, but when we look at those created in the image of God, we can see their future. That future either holds for them a body of splendor that would tempt us to worship them or a depraved creature that would send us into sleepless fits.
God is with you and He is not silent. (pg. 149)
Even though we may not audibly hear God or even sense His presence we can know He’s not silent from the life of Jesus. I said it here that Jesus walked in our shoes so that we would know that we’re not alone. How true is that? The man of sorrows bore our own and by His life and His emptiness into the humble form of humanity that we take on can give us hope that our Christ truly understands and empathizes with our broken story.
We exist for God and not for ourselves. (pg. 157)
This has to be a shift in our thinking because we are told continuously in commercials and through our culture at large to live for ourselves. The “me culture” has been here for decades and it’s not disappearing anytime soon. It’s easier to look at what strokes our ego. It’s far more difficult to live a life trying to please God and give Him the glory. In our broken stories where suffering seems to have no purpose and clearly doesn’t stroke our ego, we can forget that we live on this earth for God and not for ourselves.
We can know that our life truly has a purpose. (pg.20)
With naturalism (think of the worldview of atheists and skeptics) our suffering doesn’t hold a purpose. We’re food for the worms and the flowers when we die and we have no one to answer to in the next life since there is no next life.
With eastern religions, we can’t even give credence to our broken stories because our suffering is just an illusion.
But with Christianity, we are told so many times that our brokenness has meaning to God.
“Though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” -1 Peter 1:6-7
In everything, even when it seems impossible to see, your broken story has a purpose, friend.
I received this book for free from IVP to discuss on Inkblots of Hope. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”