Conflict in a Story
Every good story has conflict, it does! Just think about your favorite story. Without conflict, the story is pretty flat and boring, you don’t even need a “villain” (think of Joker in Batman, the evil step-mother in Cinderella, or Swiper in Dora) in order to create conflict. A lot of times conflict can arise from positive values that conflict. Take the Bennet girls from Pride and Prejudice, they value marriage, love, and wealth. These are all good values that can conflict if they fall in love with and marry someone without wealth, or marry someone with wealth they don’t love. There are many other types of conflict, but in any story, the conflict causes the protagonist to grow, learn, and become a better person in the end. Here are our 2 different story lines, which one would make for a better story? Which one will cause greater growth in the protagonists?
Story Line A:
We continue on the path that we are on, a comfortable house, comfortable jobs, comfortable neighborhood, drifting through a life of comfort, ease, and predictability. We have the ability to serve the limited number of people we come in contact with. We rarely step out of our comfort zone and fulfill our potential.
Story Line B:
We leave the comfort zone by selling and donating all that is comfortable to us. Instead of finding stability in drifting through familiarity day-to-day, we find stability in ourselves, who we are and what we stand for. We interact with countless people with the potential to make a bigger difference in the world. We rely on God to direct us where to go and who to serve.
Story A is a MUCH more comfortable story line, but it doesn’t create much conflict or opportunity for the protagonist to grow and change. It isn’t an interesting story.
Story B is scary! YIKES! Sometimes I can’t believe we are choosing to throw ourselves into this conflict. But, by the end of the story, there is potential for a greater reward, and more growth in our family.