Choosing a Better Story

I’ve read/listened to Donald Miller’s “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” at least 2-3 times. If you haven’t read it yet, I definitely recommend it. If you don’t like to read or your current reading list is too long, then just read chapter nine – it’s only six pages. You can do it right now if you want…

Did you read it? It’s incredible, right? I’ve re-told the story from chapter nine so many times I’ve lost count. Some of you didn’t read it, so here’s the quick version: There’s a family with a teenage daughter whose making some bad choices (drugs, loser boyfriend, etc.). So the dad decides it’s time for their family to offer her a different story and he tells them they’re going to build an orphanage for $25k. It will involve risk, sacrifice, and a lot of work. At first, they think he’s crazy, but soon enough they all get excited and the daughter comes up with all sorts of ideas about how they can make it work. A few months later, the family is connecting in ways they haven’t in years and the daughter breaks up with the boyfriend after he tells her she’s too fat. As the dad says, “No girl who plays the role of a hero dates a guy who uses her. She knows who she is. She just forgot for a little while.”

She chose a better story.

What if we all got to choose a better story? What if we created families and communities where people had roles and knew they had value and potential to make a difference?

Is it time for you to start writing a better story with your life?

I love watching circles grow and write stories together – friend circles, family circles, neighborhood circles, all of the circles. I am convinced that if you want to grow relationships and write better stories, you should serve together. There’s nothing quite like shared experiences where you stretch and move outside of your comfort zones, and in the process learned to depend on each other.


Part of the heart behind our Expanding the Table food truck at Ashley Ridge Church is having a vehicle for families and circles to serve together. A lot of outreach opportunities aren’t available to kids, and with good reason, but we wanted a space where people of all ages could interact and share a meal together, a place where kids could learn they already have everything they need to make a difference and give back to their community. They can choose a better story than the one being offered via the smart-mouth television shows supposedly meant for them (any other parents feeling me here? Get it together tv-land!).

Traywick Pierce ETTJake and Bry at ETT

Life is hard and sometimes we end up writing and living the stories we never intended, but we get to choose a better story because Jesus wrote a different ending. If you need somewhere to start – call your circle and go do something that matters together.

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