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Stranger (better)-than-Fiction-will-ferrell-272971_1024_768

Harold Crick QuotationI love the dialogue to the left between Dr. Mittag-Leffler and Harold Crick. It takes my Christian imagination to a place I wish it would go much more often, like as often as every time the second-hand of a clock ticks.

Like Harold Crick, we often feel like words are being said about us from a voice that remains invisible to us. Those words might be coming from a voice in our head. You know, that voice that tells us what it wants to tell us. It’s that voice that couldn’t care less what we should hear as children of the Father. It’s the voice that doesn’t care about our progress (or lack thereof) in sanctification or about whether or not we’re increasing in the enjoyment of our participation in the Son’s communion with his Father.

Dr. David Martyn Lloyd-Jones put it like this:

“Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself? Take those thoughts that come to you the moment you wake up in the morning. You have not originated them but they are talking to you, they bring back the problems of yesterday, etc. Somebody is talking. Who is talking to you? Your self is talking to you. Now this man’s treatment [in Psalm 42] was this: instead of allowing this self to talk to him, he starts talking to himself. ‘Why art thou cast down, O my soul? he asks. His soul had been depressing him, crushing him. So he stands up and says, ‘Self, listen for moment, I will speak to you’” (Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and Cure).

Unlike Harold Crick, we do not have Karen Eiffel (played by the talented actress Emma Thompson) talking about us or to us like this.

The voices that are talking about us and to us are far more devious in their intent. And although much of what they say is fiction as they parrot the words of the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10), all that is said is actually being said (lies though they be!). But the good news of the Gospel is that we do not live in a fictional story written by a devious and sinister writer. We live in a Story as real as the Triune God’s eternal and now redemptive Story.

Again, unlike Harold Crick, we have words spoken over us and about us that make new realities for us. Words that place us in a whole new world that is yet hidden from our sight (one day to be revealed to the children of God).

When Jesus was baptized and came up from the water, Matthew tells us that “the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased’” (Matthew 3:16-17).

If we are children of God through faith in Jesus, these words narrate the Story we’ve been written into and they follow us along everyday, all day. Just as Harold Crick said in a panic when he discovered the unseen reality of his life, “I’m being followed by a woman’s voice!”, we can daily say with great joy in our hearts, “I’m being followed by the voice of my Father: ‘You are my cherished child, with you I am well pleased.’”

The Most Beautiful Story Ever (Being) Written

New Mercies Every Morning - New Creation

As believers, we can be absolutely sure that God has written us into the most beautiful Story ever told. God’s Story is the only story large enough to make sense out of our little, seemingly insignificant stories. Jesus rewrites Harold Crick-like stories and transforms them into great stories, no matter how mundane, messed up, or insignificant our day-to-day stories seem to be.

In Jesus, our badly written stories (stories that are deeply stained by our own sin and rebellion) are miraculously and graciously re-written. Jesus is the Word who is God (John 1:1) who, to quote Professor Tolkien, will one Day make “everything sad come untrue.” The Jesus who upholds all things by the word of his power has the incomparable Gospel-power to re-write the story of the first Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45), transforming it, redeeming it, renewing it, and in it, reconciling us to the Father by becoming the last Adam for us  (1 Corinthians 15:45).

The good news of this Story is that God the Son has entered our messed up stories of fear, doubt, and estrangement to graciously rewrite and transform them into the love Story of all love stories.

God is writing an epic Tale in which He reconciles, restores, and renews all things. It’s the love Story of Jesus and his Father that’s been opened up to include us; and God longs for us to learn how to live intentionally within it.

We are all Harold Cricks. The only advantage we have (and what an advantage it is!) is a better Author and Finisher of our life’s story.

Jesus has given us a Story that doesn’t conclude with the words, “The End.” Thank goodness! Rather, the Story Jesus has written us into concludes with these words, “and they live happily ever after in a new heaven and a new earth” (Revelation 21:1).

Will you join us October 4-5 at Southern Seminary in Louisville as we journey into this Story of all stories, into the Story that changes everything for us and the fatherless? You’ll leave deeply encouraged, refreshed, and empowered.

Early-Bird Deadline 2013

  • Bryan Lopez

    Fantastic post, Dan! Great encouragement… I can’t wait till October!

  • DanCruver

    Thank you very much for taking the time to comment and encourage, Bryan. Means a lot! Yes, see you in October! Can’t wait!

  • amtP

    I *heart* Stranger than Fiction! Have we had this discussion in-person?! The monologue at the end of the movie has so much Jesus in it, I’m convinced that the Hollywood writer is secretly a theologian. :D

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