Stepping into Your Story

Janellestepping Ross

There is a scene in one of the episodes of the television show Friends (The One with Ross’s Wedding, Part 1, if you’re a fan). The gang is in London, England, and Joey and Chandler are about to head out to see the sights. Joey pulls out a map and when he opens it, the tourist attractions pop up like they might in a children’s book. After trying for a few unsuccessful minutes to figure out where he wants to go, he simply puts the map on the ground and steps right into it.

Chandler is embarrassed by Joey’s touristy, exuberant embrace of the city. They part ways and Chandler ends up spending a lonely, miserable afternoon. Joey, on the other hand, has a grand time. With his pop-up map as a guide, he explores the city. He buys souvenirs, takes pictures, and makes wonderful memories. He steps into the day with excitement and exuberance, and accepts the adventure as it unfolds.

I’ve been Chandler and I’ve been Joey, and can I just say this? Being Joey is better.

Unfolding the map of possibility and stepping right into your story, no matter how silly or scary or geeky it might feel, is really and truly the most beautiful way to live.

Granted, stepping into your story might not be cool. It might not be popular or even acceptable. It probably won’t be what everyone else is doing. There’s a chance it could be embarrassing or misunderstood. It will likely be challenging. But throw all those things into a pot and give them a big stir, and I guarantee it won’t be boring.

Scripture is full of story-steppers. I mean, FULL of them. Abraham stepped out and Jonah stepped away and Ruth stepped up. Peter stepped right over the edge of the boat and onto the water. And Jesus, well, He stepped the most giant of steps, didn’t He? From heavenly life to earthly life to earthly death to heavenly life, again.

Suddenly, my little journey and my tiny-brave baby steps don’t seem so ridiculous, after all. In fact, after considering all the scripture stories, I’m more than a little inspired. I’m considering the possibility that God prefers Joey’s over Chandler’s, too.

God is an adventurous God, isn’t He? He seems to love a great road trip. I imagine Him sometimes, coaxing me off the couch or the curb. I see Him standing there, holding out His hands and saying, “Come on, Girl. Take courage. There’s a story out there all ready for you to step into.”

I think He has a pop-up map waiting for you, too. It’s never too late.

When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless.” – Genesis 17:1

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