Wade's Weekly Word

Hearing the word “story” connected with Christmas causes many to think of the event as being a fable or a fairy tale. Couple this with the story of Santa Claus, reindeer, trees, stockings, and gifts, and it’s easy to see why one would lump them all together as just another traditional, but untrue story.

I fear that many people have come to feel the same way about Christmas as one little girl felt. Sitting on Santa’s knee in the mall, she asked, “Are you a politician?”

“Why do you ask?” Santa replied.

“Because you always promise more than you can deliver,” she said.

The First Advent of King Jesus revealed that Father God had not promised more than He could deliver on. The birth of Messiah Jesus was the fulfillment of the promises that God had been making for centuries to Israel, the Old Covenant people of God.

On the first Christmas night almost 2,000 years ago, God delivered on His promises as the Star of the story of God’s unfolding drama of redemption is born in Bethlehem.

The Christmas Event is the greatest story the world has ever heard. The good news it brought and brings – the gospel - is the invitation to tear up all our own little scripts and self-made stories, and enlist, with a clean start and a strategic part, as members of the cast in God’s big redemptive story.

It is my humble opinion, that for too long we have viewed the Bible as a book about what we are supposed to do instead of seeing it as a word portrait of who God is. We have gleaned principles and precepts, formulas, and favorite lessons from it, and yet missed the big picture, the big story – the metanarrative.

“Metanarrative” means “big story.” It is a worldview in story shape. It means a big, comprehensive story that explains who we are, how we got here, why we are as we are, and where we are going. It is a universal that is big enough to cover all the particulars. A metanarrative shapes who we are, what we believe, what we aspire to be, as well as our vision of truth. When we lose it, we lose our identity, we lose ourselves.

The Bible is a metanarrative from creation to new creation. And because it is, as followers of King Jesus, we affirm with confidence what modern man denies, i.e., that there is a master story that makes sense of all reality. We offer what modern man demands, i.e., a real, historical, yet very personal story of the one true and living God who made us and then in the person of His Son, was willing to become one of us in order to redeem us from destruction. And then through His salvation, He would come, not only to redeem us from our sins, self, and Satan, but to intimately relate to us God by moving in to live in us in a forever love relationship! Glory to God in the Highest!

The weight of glory that this story carries makes me feel like the man who had been married for over twenty years and was asked why he and his wife had no children. He replied, “My wife is impregnable.” Realizing that this statement didn’t sound right, he corrected himself. “No, she’s inconceivable.” Even more dissatisfied, he said, “No, no, that’s not right. I guess you could just say that she’s unbearable!” Anyone trying to explain the marvel, mystery, majesty, and miracle of the big redemptive story of God experiences the same difficulty this man had.

God’s big glory story declares that He has spoken fully, finally and in a forever way in the Word that became flesh and dwelt among us as the glory of God - the Promised Messiah, the Star of the Story – the Fulfiller of all its prophecies and types.

The woman at the well in John 4:25 said in Peterson’s Message, “I do know that the Messiah is coming. When He arrives, we will get the whole story.” The whole gospel tells the whole, and old, old, but ever true story of Jesus and His love.

Philip Greenslade sums up the Big Story as he writes: “In him, the ‘Final Word made flesh’ (Jn. 1:14; Heb.1:1), the story of Israel is successfully written, the story of God is fully revealed, and the story of the world redeemingly redrawn.”

What’s your story? Living the “American dream”? Is it getting a good education, a good job, a good mate, get a couple of good children, get a lot of good stuff – cash, cars, clothes, cabins - a good house in a good neighborhood, occasionally attend a good church filled with good people, take a lot of good vacations, enjoy a good time golfing, gardening, and hunting and fishing, then retirement with good health, so that you can go to a good place called Heaven?

May I suggest to you that your story is far too small, too self-centered, and will never satisfy the reason for your being – that why-am-I-here cry that constantly echoes in the chambers of your heart.

Let me invite you to tear up your little script and join the cast of God’s Big Story. When you get truly captured by it, you’ll be so captivated with it that you’ll be compelled by love to tell the old, old story of God’s redeeming love. You’ll begin to understand that everything we do as believers - as those who are ‘in Christ’ - makes sense because it is connected to God’s big story, illuminating who we are in Christ, who He is in us, and what we are here for.

The hopes and fears of all the years have been meet in Messiah Jesus. We, as the Israel of God, with an assured offspring that will be as the stars of the sky in number, and as fellow members of a holy nation, can live as royal priest, re-presenting God to man and man to God – telling the greatest story ever told – God’s Big Glory Story of Redeeming Love!









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