In recent years I’ve become more interested in the art of story telling. There are countless articles out there about how to tell a story, capture the attention of your audience and bring things to a satisfactory conclusion.
However, I’ve begun to note that the middle of the story is where most of us spend large portions of our lives, but we rarely concentrate on this bit when watching films, reading books or listening to stories.
If you look at any story you are familiar with, generally speaking the middle will be a part of journeying towards the conclusion. Most of us want the story to end on an upbeat note, a satisfactory denouement. However, we spend most of our lives in the middle part, where the end is not clear and the struggle is ongoing.
For a long time the photograph associated with this diary entry was the lock screen image on my smartphone. It reminded me, and indeed still does, that we have to continue to follow the path and we’ll eventually find out where it leads us.
In the Bible there are numerous stories where, if you stop in the middle and think for a bit, you realise just what challenges the people faced.
When Daniel was dropped into the lion’s den, what must he have felt, thought, feared?
When Joseph was sold as a slave by his own brothers, and then ended up in prison for acting with incredible integrity, how did he think his life was going to end up?
Today is Easter Saturday. For most Christians, this is the ‘non day’ inbetween Good Friday, when Jesus Christ was crucified by the Romans after being fitted up by his own fellow Jews, and Easter Sunday, when He rose from the dead and appeared to many people in and around Jerusalem.
Think about what His followers must have thought on that day so many years ago. Everything they had learned in the previous three years must have felt like it was wrong, a waste of time. They must have been devastated! All of what they had held true to, all the pointers which they had understood Jesus to mean while he taught them, walked life with them, and invested time in them, had come to this – He was DEAD!
This was the time of fear, insecurity, and perhaps faith for some. That part where you don’t know what on earth is going on, but you TRUST God for the outcome.
If you’re in the middle at the moment, and it’s extremely likely that you are, keep going. Keep trusting. Keep in touch with God. He has this, and there is literally no-one better placed to walk with you to the end of your own story.