A little late night thinking…
I was reading my Bible tonight and came to a verse in Mark that says “[Jesus] did not say anything to them without using a parable” (Mark 4:34). And I just stopped, put my Bible down, and leaned back, trying to picture what life would be like if all I ever did was talk in stories. The creativity! The brilliance of masking truths into everyday situations!
But then I realized something. My daily interactions with my peers usually revolve around the telling of stories. We complain about the crazy traffic to work this morning. We tell funny stories from the last family reunion went were forced to attend. We discuss the hypothetical reality that our boss is an alien. Everything is in ‘story’ form; the more of a plot your narrative has, the more attentive your listeners will be.
So why is it so surprising that Jesus would use a similar method of talking? He entertained/captivated/connected to his listeners via encounters that were relevant to their lives. The Parable of the Sower is about a man scattering some seeds on the ground and what happens to them. Some grow, some don’t. Some get choked by weeds, others thrive. Cool beans.
What Jesus does that is so compelling, is that he reveals a Truth behind each and every story. He shows His disciples that behind these daily events and encounters lies a reality which God directs.
We agonize over the wonderful date we had last week with a guy who never called again. But we fail to dig down to the Truth residing in our hearts (are we just really lonely? did God want us to meet him for some specific reason? is He teaching us patience?).
Christ’s parables often feel impersonal because they aren’t revolving around Him, but He chose to reflect our own natural instincts and our own personal stories back at us. He did this so that we might come to know the Truth, the Truth that is ever-present in our day-to-day conversations.