What Is Our Story?

What Is Our Story?

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How can Americans, and American Christians in particular, work toward a more comprehensive and equitable national narrative for all? The exclusivist aspects of the core narratives that have defined the United States make clear that we need a new narrative. We need a general consensus of values and a feeling that we’re part of the…

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  • Reply July 22, 2023


    1. Internal Consistency. Ask yourself, Whom does my narrative include and exclude? For example, does your story make space for how people of your own ethnic roots engaged with people of other cultures and religious beliefs? Consider who the enemies are in your story. For example, do you believe that illegal immigrants are the greatest threat to America? Conversely, have you labeled all White people as the enemy?

    2. Historical Accuracy. Ask yourself, Does the story of America that I believe in give a defensible history of the nation’s history? Consider who the main historical players are in your version of a national narrative. What are the achievements of your historical heroes? Have scholars verified or debunked these claims? Assessing the historical accuracy of our national stories requires time and research as we move from simply receiving “truths” passed down to us and begin to study and analyze the information for ourselves.

    3. Value Impact. Ask yourself, What do I value above all else as an American? How do these values either help or harm other people? For example, does your national story lead to justification of violence or intolerance? We all need to face our moral failures, individually and as a country.

    4. Biblical Assessment. Finally, ask yourself, Does my story and the subsequent way I live my life align with Scripture’s call to love God and love my neighbor? The Bible says that we must “demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God” and “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). This means that we must bring every story in our lives before the Lord in prayer, asking for his Spirit to give us discernment on whether these stories—and their present-day ramifications—glorify God.

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