He replied, “You’ve been given insight into God’s kingdom. You know how it works. Not everybody has this gift, this insight; it hasn’t been given to them. Whenever someone has a ready heart for this, the insights and understandings flow freely. But if there is no readiness, any trace of receptivity soon disappears. That’s why I tell stories: to create readiness, to nudge the people toward receptive insight. In their present state they can stare till doomsday and not see it, listen till they’re blue in the face and not get it. Matthew 13:11-13
There is a progression through which individuals move towards belief. Those who make a decision to follow Jesus will usually look at the path behind them and point to a series of things that led them to their faith decision. Among the many things that made my heart ready to follow was music. As a kid I listened to a lot of music and I was drawn to music and lyrics that had a spiritual component to it. I can remember listening to the music of Kansas a lot, and identified with the spiritual journey that Kerry Livgren was on.
I love that Jesus was a story teller. He spun metaphorical stories that enticed people, drew them in and made their hearts ready for faith. We have the same opportunity through art, music, video, writing, plays, and other forms of metaphorical, artistic expression. I am convinced more than ever, if we want the Message to remain relevant to a digital generation, we must become better story tellers. If we don’t, any receptivity to God’s Message will quickly be lost and buried beneath the blur of internet traffic.
Today, I’m praying to be a better story teller.Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and woodlouse