We all have a story and as the story of our life unfolds it will intersect with the stories of others. Stories matter.
Back in 1846, James Caughey visited a little church in Nottingham as guest speaker. He talked about God’s desire that we develop the character of a servant, help the poor and share our faith.
One particular bloke sitting in the congregation had been drifting in his faith. God spoke to him that night and his story changed. That young man was William Booth and the movement he founded was the Salvation Army, which today is an international movement sharing the gospel and meeting human need in the most deprived situations.
A few things struck me about that story:
1. Firstly, there’s a challenge to Faithfulness
James Caughey was a Methodist minister who faithfully followed God’s call to move to England, not knowing what might lie ahead.
2. Secondly, there’s a challenge to show up
He was faithful and wasn’t bothered about fame or profile or preaching to large audiences. He was happy to show up at a small gathering and share what God had put on his heart. He had no idea of how his words might impact another’s life.
3. Thirdly, there’s a challenge to serve
He presented a challenge not just for folks to turn to God in faith, but called them to action to serve a needy world.
In Luke 22:32 Jesus says ‘I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers’.
Jame’s Coughey’s faithfulness intersected with William Booth’s shaky faith. God spoke and the story changed. Booth turned back and found a way to strengthen others.
We all have a story, and our stories matter.