I’ve been reading a lot of Madeleine L’Engle in the past few nights when I can’t fall asleep during the ungodly hours. Somehow her words are the perfect blend of bedtime story and conversational philosophy (maybe that’s why she’s the successful author behind the children’s book A Wrinkle In Time). If you’re a Christian and you identify as a creative, then you must read her works; and if you’re not or neither, read her words anyway.
Therefore I’ve been reflecting a lot on ‘story’ and its impact on us. Why would Jesus choose parables over commands? Why do we choose metaphors and allegories over stating the cold truth? What is this human instinct to remember and retell stories?
One of her many reasons to uphold the art of storytelling is that stories exercise our God-given imagination. Stories give us hope when we can’t see it. Stories remind us that the world is bigger than us. Stories humanise the ‘other’ – the ‘other’ that God has imagined in His image, yet is vastly different from me – and infuses our fantasies in human reality (or is it the other way around?).
Story was in no way an evasion of life, but a way of living life creatively instead of fearfully.Madeleine L’Engle, Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art
How relatable are these words in our current times? We certainly can’t evade the news as we need to stay informed (though regulating our intake is good for our souls).
But we have the choice to live creatively. Plus, the best news is that choosing to live creatively is our natural choice, after all, a creative God created us in His image.