Posts Tagged ‘live a better story’

So last night I was painting. I had create the piece for my next paint party at church. I got something I’m really happy with, by the way. I also did an experimental sketch portrait of Jesus. I got this sort of out there idea for a series of paintings and a big presentation, but first, I needed to do this sketch. I also saw some art that inspired me to try some new techniques and color ideas, so I was experimenting. I decided while I was painting I would listen to some movies on my Kindle fire. The first was Walt Before Mickey, the story of Walt Disney’s early years, and no surprises here, I loved it. I’ve long been an admirer of Mr. Disney’s work and this was a great story. Really inspirational. I wish I’d watched it last.

Instead I watched Founder, which is the story of Ray A Kroc, “founder” of McDonald’s. I’m trying to lost some weight and abstain from fast food, and this movie will help. If even a tenth of what this movie said was true, it could keep me out of McDonald’s for a very long time. The guy basically stole everything from two guys he met in California who were the true founders of McDonald’s. Every innovation, every idea, everything right down to their name. I mean the McDonald brothers basically invented fast food, and he took it all from them basically with no qualms at all. Again I have to keep in mind, Hollywood never lets the facts get in the way of a good story, and I should probably give Kroc the benefit of the doubt, but this thing really hit me and it led me to a pretty obvious conclusion. The way we live matters. The story our lives tell matters. Oh, Kroc became a very wealthy man, and his company has done some real good in the world, but at what cost. Someone very wise said something about winning the world and long your soul. I won’t speak the condition of Kroc’s actual soul, that’s up to his Maker, but he (at least as this movie portrays him) surely lost touch with his moral soul.

And that brings me to the other thing I’ve been dealing with lately. I saw this video of a young “comedian” (to be a comedian, you should actually be funny, hence the quotes) that’s making it’s way around the “inter-webs.” She was speaking at the White House Correspondent’s dinner. Now I know that thing is a roast, and I tried to give her the benefit of the doubt, but it was just an awful, profanity laced diatribe, crude and vulgar and oh yes, not at all funny. Today I saw one of these hysterical memes saying the Republicans want her to be punished. I’ve learned a long time ago that if you want to gin up controversy where there is none, all you have to do is make a preposterous meme and post it to Facebook. About three quarters of the world will fall for it hook line and sinker. I for the record do not agree that she should be punished. The First Amendment is a two edged sword, step on someone else’s free speech and sooner or later they’ll come for yours. I don’t think she should be punished, or censored or anything of the kind. Instead, I will simply remember, public figures live and die on attention, and so I will do the one thing that always works. I will turn her off.

See the thing is, if I don’t like your story, there are a million other stories I can plug into and if enough people take that tactic, you have a choice, change your story or fade into oblivion. The story we live, for better or worse, matters. Live a better story.

Just watch…

This is not original content to me of course, but it echoes what I am starting to see as a big block to our living a better story. (Please ignore his one obscenity, this content is important) I see so many people with their faces in their phones as real life living people stand before them. I know a lot of you only know me as a result of the very technology I am wrestling with and you need to know I care for and value you very highly. I also hope to meet you all one day in person. In the mean time, These posts will be here forever or at least until the server fails but that real life person who is with you right now may be in your life for a limited time. Value them now! Tune in here when you’re alone or bored or when you need a little encouragement but when you’re with your loved ones, please tune out.

And for goodness sake, when you’re out at a restaurant or hanging with a friend, put the lap top away, put the phone in your pocket and love the one you’re with.

I’m watching the movie 42. The story of Jackie Robertson, the first African American playing major league baseball. I’m about 15 minutes into it and I am already irritated, I can’t believe retreated people this way but I know it’s true. It’s astounding how short sighted we have been and yet I have this advantage knowing the story and this is truly a better one. With most people against him, he stood and and some stood with him. That’s what it takes. Evil advances when good people do nothing, good stories happen when ordinary people take a stand and do what’s right, just because it’s right. Jackie Robinson was called a hero. He said he was just a ball player. He was wrong….

Heroes are just ordinary people who have decided to give their best to doing what’s right.

Live a better story!

So lately I’ve been on something of a reading binge and there is a recurring theme. I read Andy Andrews’ The Noticer Returns, Jeff Goins’ The In-between and Bob Goff’s Love Does. I’m now half way into <a href="Wrecked: When a Broken World Slams into Your Comfortable Life“>Jeff Goins’ Wrecked. They are all in one way or another, great story tellers telling how to live a great story. Once again I find myself in that place called self-examination. What kind of story am I living? I have this overriding desire to make a difference with this one and only life I have been given. In order to do that, I need to follow God and use all that I have been given, my gifts, my resources and my precious time to do the things that matter most.

I’d love to include you in this journey, I’d also like your help to get to where I need to be. If you see ways that I can serve the Lord and others, I would love to hear about them. Also, and this might be the most important thing, I’d like to help you on your journey. How can I encourage you to live out your ultimate story, God’s will for your life.

I get the idea that a big part of living a better story is leaving your comfort zone. It involves commitment and hard work. Mostly though it means following God into what He is doing. God is good, trust him and live the story.

This year, my hope is to finish another book, launch a new workshop into a new realm of creativity, and go on a tour. I’m excited about all this stuff and yet it seems there is something missing I could sure use your prayers.

Thanks for your help and your prayers.

Here’s a shot from this weekend’s adventure in art.

A friend posted this video and I loved it. It’s subtitled but worth the three minutes it’ll take to watch it. The concept is simple, you never know what good you do when you do good. Sometimes, “what comes around goes around…” sometimes perhaps not, but either way, giving and generosity are commanded by God.

Live a better story by doing good with a generous heart.

Over the last two days I have posted two challenging sentences on Facebook. The first was:
Tell a better story!
and the second:
Live a better story!
The follow up to both of them is this question:
What’s your story?
You see every story has a hero and every life should have a hero and the people we call our heroes help to shape the story we live and the story we tell.
Who’s your hero?
Here are a few suggestions:

Tell a better story, live a better story…

What are you going to do?

When I first heard about the book Blue Like Jazz, I wasn’t terribly interested, then I found myself in an airport bored out of my mind so I went looking for something to read. I saw it and picked it up. I read it before my plane landed at home. It became very influential on me. In the book Miller takes an honest look at his life following (or trying to follow) Jesus.

Then he wrote another book called A Million Miles in a Thousand Years that opens another window onto the journey. Making a movie about Blue Like Jazz (coming out in limited release soon) forced Miller to look at the story of his life and came to the realization that he didn’t just need to tell a better story, he wanted to live a better story.

I didn’t always agree with every conclusion Miller came to, but it wasn’t up to me to agree (or disagree) anyway. These books are a man telling his story and reading them forced me to look at the story of Jesus my life tells and made me want to live a better story.

What kind of story are you living?