The Better Story

Brad here. I'm going to attempt to connect a few dots bouncing around my head so bear with me. 

Last weekend my cousin (Kaity) got married (to Matt) here in Cincinnati. Our babysitter was booked so my sister-in-law (Stephanie) drove down from Columbus to watch our toddler (Henry).

On the left is a snap of the wedding favor courtesy of Matt. He's a brewmaster and worked his magic, handcrafting two original beers for everyone to take home. On the right is Hank. I included him solely because I like his face.

We got home pretty late from the wedding and reception so Stephanie was already asleep. As my wife (Leah) and I got ready to do the same, I opened the bathroom closet to find that Stephanie worked her magic and COMPLETELY reorganized the entire thing.

Fast forward to to this week. I finally watched Life of Pi. The basic plot (spoiler alert): A teenager named Pi survives a shipwreck despite sharing a lifeboat with a ferocious tiger named Richard Parker. Most of the movie tells that amazing story. At the very end, while recovering in the hospital, Pi tells his outrageous story to the investigators who obviously don't believe him. They ask for the truth. So he tells them a completely different story. One where all the outrageous moments have more plausible explanations.

As an adult, Pi is asked by a new friend which story is true. Pi replied, "Well, you can't prove either of them. So which story is better?" The friend said the story with the tiger.

Pi replied, "And so it goes with God."


After the movie I was up in the bathroom trying to find my razor in the newly organized closet. I marveled at Stephanie's handiwork. Everything had new place in the closet, it all made perfect sense how she divided things and turned chaos into order. It was a work of art. And I thought about how amazing it is that God makes all of us so different with such unique skills. 

But immediately following that thought I wondered, "Is that true?" 

Much like David in A Strange Brand of Happy, I questioned if God really had anything to do with Stephanie's bent towards organization. Maybe it's just a lifetime of nature and nurture that made her that way. How can you prove that God hardwired her this particular way?

I thought about Pi and realized that I can't prove it. But which is a better story? 

My answer would be the story about God making each of us very uniquely because he has an outrageously complex, yet strangely simple plan to make this world better.

Perhaps he made Matt (the newlywed brewmaster) a deeply curious lad knowing that he'll find creative ways to serve his friends. Like pursuing a degree in brewing and building a brewery in his basement. And perhaps God gave Stephanie a brain that sees order amongst chaos. So when she's not secretly fixing people's messy cabinets she's working her magic in the neonatal intensive care unit bringing new life into this crazy world. 

I can't prove God has anything to do with anything. This life is as much poetry as science. But it's a better story that he does have something to do with how we're wired. And so I choose the better story.  

He made you and he was happy. You make the Lord happy.  Choose that story and see where he takes you.