In any narrative laid out before us, we are drawn to inhabit varying degrees of audience-ness. On one pole, that of entirely audience, are those which watch, read or listen to the story from without. They do not identify with any aspect of the story. That is extremely disconnected to what stories involve and reflects on the story (if it managed to represent nothing that is "true" to us) or on the audience (who lives as a practical solipsist). One the other pole is the complete identification with the story. This characteristic in ourselves finds us taking a role in the story like some plain, intellectually self gratifying female of perpetual singleness finding that she breathes the very atman of Elizabeth Bennett. Again this reflects either on the quality of the story or its audience.
The first pole mentioned is pointless to story as stories seek to convey and nothing was conveyed. It was just some thing, an article, like a rock, but a rock has no intention of communication. The second or other pole matters a great deal. The actualness of the story, its truth regarding objective truth, calls to everyone to align themselves truly to the parts they ought. There are women just like Elizabeth Bennett and they should see themselves in her. Tragically there are more Mr. Collins than those who recognize it and equally tragic, fewer Mr Darcys than the actual Elizabeths would like.
But for all this I think about the Gospel. The narrative told us by God is that we are sinners, every man jack of us, and as sinners damned eternally. Now the above description of audience applies. Within Christendom (not Christianity) there are many who see the narrative of God's salvific purpose without seeing their participation in the story. They may advance the story. They may say the story is true. Certainly they, in this advocacy of the story (remember they inhabit Christendom), are not at the first polar extreme. They have heard the story with the attendance and enjoyment of a Stars Wars fan. They have willfully suspended their disbelief and they pretend that the story is true and the equally pretend (for the serious fans) that they are like one or more of the characters. While at a Christian church or conference or concert they participate in the story with the back or nature of their mind ready to realize, on leaving the "theater", that they are not Han Solo. Christianity asks for something more. It tells a story that we are not supposed to enjoy temporarily as if only meeting it with story and audience clearly distinct. It tells a story that is about us. We don't just find that we are "like" a character in it, we "are" a character in it. Those sinners it speaks of are all of us who hear it. To fail in this identification is to fail to have a faith that will beseech God for forgiveness of Our Sins.
The great thing, if we wish to visit our Jane Austen motif again, is that once we discover that we are, actually are, Elizabeth Bennett we know that the story has promised Mr Darcy. We are the sinners in the story of the Gospel and Jesus Christ has died for us.