Sometimes you can be a prisoner of a story not your own. You can be wrapped up in a story of greed, vengeance or vanity. Your entire story can sometimes be captured by others who sum you up in a word or category, and you can then become that word: alcoholic, neurotic, victim, loser, and so on. You can find yourself living through the eyes of others, losing sight of your own value. Stories that tell you you’re hopeless and will come to nothing are self-defeating: stories that tell you you’re wonderful and special can leave you vulnerable when challenges come your way. To be fully alive you need to be in touch with the story that begins and ends in love, and for many of us that is the Christian story.

Excerpted from Dipping Into Life by Alan Hilliard (p.77)