Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Power of Story

There’s a powerful story at the heart of this holiday season for the Christian world—and no, it doesn’t involve a charitable trespasser or a bioluminescent proboscis.

Setting aside distractions, like the claim that the event we celebrate didn’t actually occur when we celebrate it, the Nativity—also called the greatest story ever told—is, in fact, the most common story ever told. Until the dystopian clone factories open, I can say with absolute confidence that all of us have experienced this story as one of the major characters. And many of us have experienced this story as one of the other two main characters.

What is remarkable, as a writer, is to consider the way in which this story transformed the most common of events into something of world-changing—and some would say eternal—significance that has echoed through two millennia and counting without losing its potency.

Many of us simply hope someone will notice our stories. And none of us can predict which of the stories now being told will still be told in a hundred or a thousand years. But there are stories that resonate across time and space, illuminating the very core of who we are or hope to be.

Image: Simon Howden /

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