What’s Your Story? (Five Minute Friday)


When I saw the word, story, as the Five Minute Friday prompt for this week, I was excited. I thought, “Now there’s a word I could probably write several 5 minutes posts about.” First, because I’m a novel writer. I love stories. I think we sometimes learn the best lessons through stories because they touch a part of us that lectures and sermons don’t. I think that’s why Jesus told parables, to reach the heart and the head all at once. I love being a story-teller.


But I also love the word story because I think we are all telling a story with our lives and I’m passionate about helping women, in particular, learn to embrace their story. I think, as women, we do ourselves a disservice when we compare ourselves so often with others. We think other people’s stories look better than our own. So instead of making our stories something to get excited about, we waste time wishing we were living someone else’s. It’s such a shame, really. Because each of us has a unique voice. A special part to play in the world around us.


I read Donald Miller’s book, “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” a few years back and it blew me away. It was the first time I really thought about my life as a story. And that I had a choice in what kind of story it was. I decided I wanted to make the most of the opportunities I was given. To open doors that might seem, at first glance, to be closed. To try new things, even if they scared me.


Some days, I have to remind myself of these things or I get caught up in the boring parts between the chapters. I get overwhelmed with the mundane details. But mostly, I can look back over the last few years and see that I started living and enjoying my story. Since reading that book, I’ve been to Africa three times, the Dominican Republic, Italy and most recently, Ireland. And I met some amazing new friends on each of those adventures. Before that, I hadn’t been out of the country in 15 years. I’ve published a novel and begun work on a second one, started a blog and taken a fiction course, online. I’m not sure I would have done any of those things, if I hadn’t been challenged to pay attention to the story my life was writing.


So, now I’m challenging you. If you find yourself comparing your dry pages to someone else’s highlight reel, stop it. Take a look at your life and decide what you can do to tell the story you were created to tell. If you get the chance, pick up Miller’s book. It’s a good story. And it will help you embrace your own.


(This message was brought to you by Five Minute Friday. An exercise in free-writing that is very liberating and I highly recommend. Every Friday, Lisa-Jo Baker publishes a prompt word and hundreds of bloggers take five minutes to write whatever comes to mind from that prompt. I usually try and get to my Five Minute Friday post by Saturday at the latest. This week, I’ve been away working on my second book and didn’t want to get distracted. But I also didn’t want to miss this prompt word. So, this is my Five MInute Monday post, for what it’s worth. To find out more about Five Minute Friday, click here!)


Photo Credit: Magenta Rose on Creative Commons

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  1. Thanks for this reminder 🙂 I do tend to compare stories…then when I step back and tell myself my story, imagining I’m someone else, all at once it does seem like ‘a real thing’ 🙂

    • I totally get that! When I started listing all that’s happened in my life since I read “Million Miles” I was amazed at the list. But in living day-to-day, I didn’t notice it before. Thanks for stopping by Naomi!

  2. Hello! (Good news: you weren’t the last to share a FMF link! 🙂 ) I love this post, and absolutely am with you on it–down to the love of Don Miller. I particularly love, “So instead of making our stories something to get excited about, we waste time wishing we were living someone else’s.” So true, and well-said. Thanks so much for this!

    • Hey Chandra, thanks for stopping by! I checked out your blog. I think you and I would get along quite well 🙂 See you around the FMF world! (pretty sure I left a comment on your blog, too. But I could have imagined it. haha)

  3. Good stuff as usual, Beka. I have also been empowered by the thoughts of ~ I have a lot of choice in my future chapters. I am not a victim. I am so happy for you on your recent travels. I know those will affect your next book in a positive way, and I am excited to see how! 🙂 love you!

  4. It’s so true that comparison is the thief of joy. Lately He’s been reminding me that my story and my gifts are unique…and that I need to embrace what He’s given me, not what He’s given others, and just live it. I’m slowly learning. 🙂 Love your words today, friend!

    • Yes! Embrace our unique gifts. So easy to tell someone else to do that and so hard to make ourselves do it, huh? Love connecting with you through FMF. Thanks for stopping by!

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