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Our stories don’t happen in isolation and there’s often more to the story than the initial events reveal. While fully addressing the immediate concerns in front of us, it’s important to occasionally step back and consider the larger context and history of what might be taking place as well. 

For instance, marital fights often take place on multiple levels. 

A disagreement about money, for example, is not just about the latest purchase. It also includes our overall money habits and the meaning money holds for each of us, which then touch on deeper heart desires that have nothing to do with money directly. These deeper desires might simply be the unique ways God has wired us. Or they might be related to significant life events that have shaped our worldview. But, in either case, there usually still much more to the story than simply the initial purchase. 

And this remains true throughout life. 

For instance, perhaps someone is disrespecting us or taking us for granted. And it’s also possible that our feelings of disrespect or being taken advantage of have more to do with our own story than with the other. Both can be true at the same time. There might be a need to address the offense with the other AND consider the aspects of our own story that might make us more sensitive to these particular offenses. 

Whatever it looks like, it’s important to regularly consider the rest of the story. Our personal histories, family patterns, cultural shifts and the like are always in the backdrop of our daily life. 

Most days we don’t give these larger stories a passing thought. And maybe this is as it should be. But we might soon find ourselves frustrated and going in circles when we don’t consider the rest of our stories. 

In the end, faithfully deal with the immediate issues in front of you. And remember there’s often more to the story that should not be neglected either. Allow this larger context to give you clearer perspectives on your daily life. 

Photo by Joanna Nix-Walkup on Unsplash

Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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