There are too many things that a mother must worry about when raising her children. Food, clothing education, self-esteem, friends, physical activity, bad influences, good grades. But there is one thing that outweighs all of the little things that may keep her up at night. And strangely enough, many parents don’t give it a second thought. This troubling oversight is responsible for the confusion of our younger generations. This unfortunate culture trend is the reason our churches are shrinking. No longer will a mother nor a father tell a story.
In generations past there have been myths and legends. Our grandparents can remember age-old tales of fairies and kings. Our ancestors congregated around the spoken word to paint a world that was known outside of our senses and experiences. But today, we have lost the integrity of our story.
Suspending disbelief, irrational and rational explanations for the world around, real superheroes and princesses etched into the fabric of a society of story. Truth and consequences on the tip of his tongue. Good and evil existing in a world of both thought and action. A story brought to life, the unseen reality as told by the storyteller.
We have lost a great thing when we no longer tell a story. Because a story is still told to our children whether we like it or not. Youtube wizards sing them the songs of tomorrow. Disney remakes lull our children to sleep. Irresponsible storytellers surround us on every front with no promise of truth or beauty or goodness. And parents, we’ve decided to be silent as their story is told.
A mother wonders why her grown up baby-girl doesn’t believe the story of forgiveness by water and word after a lifetime of you-get-what-you-deserve episodes. A father despairs when his son can’t remember the story of love, honor and responsibility after a childhood of Sunday morning soccer games. Cowardly sensitive to his or her choices has silenced the story of truth. It may be inconvenient or messy, but it’s not complicated. We have chosen to pass on the responsibility of their story to anyone who will take it.
Don’t give up on their story. A story paints a world. It creates a framework in which to understand all other stories told to them. And it’s critical that the faithful community of saints rooted in the Gospel of Jesus is the one speaking. Your child will eventually discover where he fits in the pages of a greater history, it is your responsibility to give him the truth from whence you came.
Boldly, take back their story. Don’t cower to the tales of the world. Don’t settle for the stories they try to tell from their personal experience. Simply surround them with the story that created your world.