Everyone is Following a Script
Watch this advertisement and then let’s talk…
What did you hear? What was being communicated? The ad was tapping into our desire to not live a scripted life. We want to break free. We want to be individuals. We want to rebel against the constraints of life.
But do you notice the problem? They tried to solve the “scripted life” problem by offering you their script. Their script is just as shallow and empty. It goes something like this…Do you want to live life to the fullest? Then you need this car.
That is sad. Tragic. Depressing.
It is the consumer life masked in counter-cultural language, but at the end of the day it’s the same old, tired script… a script that says what you own is your identity.
Now here’s the thing about Christianity, the gospel, it comprehensively breaks the script of this world. It says things like Blessed are the poor in Spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. To be blessed mean to have the good life, to be approved by God. This only happens when we realize that there is nothing in us that can earn the approval of God. There is no amount of purchases we can make to acquire the good life. We get the good life when we realize we are dependant on the good life of Jesus to be imparted to us.
Now I completely get that some people will counter by saying “Don’t think you’re above the script. You are following a script too.” I don’t deny that. Everyone is following a script, a story, but are you following the right story? What if freedom was found not in “breaking the script” but in submitting to THE script?
I am convinced that our stories are meant to connect with this massive, epic story of God, and in doing so, our stories find their significance and meaning. It’s a tactic of the enemy to make us think we are being independent thinkers, and all the while we are buying into a script that leads to death and devastation.
If I buy the car, eventually it will break down. Eventually I’ll get bored with it. Eventually the novelty will wear off. Eventually it will end up in a junk yard.
In Jesus I get to have union with my Maker and Creator. In Jesus I get to know, really know, the author of my story. You may not believe that to be true, but I’m convinced you should want that to be true.
I said in my heart, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure; enjoy yourself.” But behold, this also was vanity. I said of laughter, “It is mad,” and of pleasure, “What use is it?” I searched with my heart how to cheer my body with wine—my heart still guiding me with wisdom—and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was good for the children of man to do under heaven during the few days of their life. I made great works. I built houses and planted vineyards for myself. I made myself gardens and parks, and planted in them all kinds of fruit trees. I made myself pools from which to water the forest of growing trees. I bought male and female slaves, and had slaves who were born in my house. I had also great possessions of herds and flocks, more than any who had been before me in Jerusalem. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the treasure of kings and provinces. I got singers, both men and women, and many concubines, the delight of the sons of man.
So I became great and surpassed all who were before me in Jerusalem. Also my wisdom remained with me. And whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them. I kept my heart from no pleasure, for my heart found pleasure in all my toil, and this was my reward for all my toil. Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.
(Ecclesiastes 2:1-11 ESV)