Blog author: Mindy Hirst
by on Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Last week we talked about how our memory is important to God using us where we are. Now we talk about another skill that is important to cultivate while being On Call in Culture: Storytelling. Only when we can express what God is doing through us can we truly understand our own experiences.

The first step in storytelling is observation and reflection. After observing our spheres and reflecting on what happens we can begin to share with others what we are learning through our journeys. But reflection and observation are difficult in our culture. There just doesn’t seem to be room in our lives for anything more! But without them, life is simply survival, not growth.

Most people write their memoirs at the end of their life when it seems their story is nearly over. When you’re at the beginning or middle of your story, it can be hard to wrap your head around what the big picture of your life is about. But that doesn’t mean that you haven’t learned anything along the way! It just means that you need to tell smaller stories first—the big, overarching one can come later.

So how do you start working through your own story? Ask yourself some basic questions. What has God taught me through experiences at my jobs and schools, through my relationships, churches, by moving and major changes, through birth and death? How have these experiences and what I’ve learned from them affected my decisions and how have those decisions changed culture in positive and negative ways?

Next, work through your answers. Tell your story to yourself and see what you learn and discover. I like to write things out, but I know plenty of people who think well when they talk things through with other people.

Finally, begin to share with others what you are learning through the process…and listen to the stories they have to share. Learning each other’s’ stories has an important tie-in with memory, the skill we talked about last week. When we are following other people’s stories, we are more likely to remember the important details related to them. Because of the emotional tie, people become more to us than the information on their Linked In profile. They become part of our own story, and that is important to memory—and to relationship.

As you think through the importance of story to being On Call in Culture, here is an interesting story telling resources:

http://www.dailywritingtips.com/how-to-structure-a-story-the-eight-point-arc/

Go live your story by being On Call in Culture!


  • www.storytellerkm.com

    Another way to start developing stories is to take a subject in the news, pray about it and choose a story from Scripture, our own lives or something we’ve heard or experienced. Then think through how you would share that as a story. Effectively, that’s what I did in Afghanistan, except the “news” were the stories of my Afghan neighbors.