Spiritual Practice


Logan Smith & Matt Dawson

Jesus told parables to teach about God’s kingdom. Jesus could have skipped the story and simply told his disciples the lesson he wanted them to learn. But he knew that telling a story has a more profound effect than merely stating the moral of the story.

Finally, Jesus said: What is God’s kingdom like? What story can I use to explain it?
Mark 4:30 (CEV)

Stories are memorable. Which would you remember more easily: a lecture on gravity or a story about your friend spilling her morning coffee?

Stories allow us to engage our minds, to figure out what facts and values we can glean from the story.

Jesus told stories so that his followers could better understand the kingdom of God. An effective form of teaching two thousand years ago, these stories still teach us profound lessons today.

—Logan Smith, 20


WHAT IS YOUR STORY? I use Bible stories as guidelines for my life. The story of Jonah reminds me to listen to God, who wants what is best for us. The story of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32) teaches me that the Lord will always welcome me home, no matter how great my shame, and shows me the benefit of obedience. The parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14–30) teaches me that I should make the most of the gifts I receive from God, for they are a blessing.

I challenge you to find your own Bible story. Meditate on it, and allow it to shape and guide your life.

—Matt Dawson, 20

—from devozine (July/August 2014). Copyright © 2014 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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