Plot Points…or How I’m Learning To Live Outside My Comfort Zone

I’m a big believer in the power of Story.  It’s my firm belief that Story has abilities beyond mere entertainment.

Story can break down walls, help us see other points of view, engage our emotions in new ways and help us learn.  Jesus is called the Author and Perfecter of our faith in Hebrews 12 and he reached people through the telling of parables.

It wasn’t until I read Donald Miller’s book, A Million Miles In A Thousand Years, that I learned the principles of Story can and should be applied to our own lives.  When Miller was approached by film makers to turn his book, Blue Like Jazz into a movie, his excitement was tempered by the fact that his real life needed doctoring in order to tell a more compelling story.

Miller learned that real stories require characters that overcome obstacles to achieve their goal.  Based on this principle, he decided to become a man who lives a better story; and what better way to do that than the use of plot points. A plot point is a significant event within a plot that digs into the action and spins it around in another direction. Miller created his own plot points by hiking a mountain in Peru and reuniting with his father.

So I’ve decided to do the same thing…create some plot points to send my life in a different direction.  Some steps I took were easy and rather benign…like highlighting my hair, or starting this blog.

Other steps have a high embarrassment factor.  By the time you read this, I will have acted/lip-synced in four videos that will be used in my church’s weekend services during the month of November.  I beyond terrified…but I’m doing it.  (But I’m also hoping for an eleventh hour miracle to happen so I don’t have to do it.) 🙂

Big steps have a big risk.

I’ve long harbored a dream of being a published writer but I never wrote anything beyond a couple of pages or a cheesy church drama.  And then when I finally got up the chutzpa to write a few pieces, they never saw the light of day.  An opportunity came up to submit an article to an online literary journal.  After a couple of weeks of engaging in an internal battle, I submitted a piece.  What’s the risk? I’ll be finding out whether or not I have what it takes.

And now I’m kind of hooked. My next plot point is:

So my question for you, dear reader, is what plot point could you write into your story?

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