Small Stories Big Ideas

When most people consider Jesus, they think about the miracles he performed, his death on the cross, or his resurrection from the dead. The big headlines. And Jesus did some amazing things like walking on water, feeding thousands with a few fish and pieces of bread, healing diseases, even bringing the dead back to life. As the New Testament reports the life of Jesus in the Gospels, there seems to be very little Jesus cannot do. It is truly breathtaking.

But we miss the red ink.

Many Bible publishers choose to print the words Jesus spoke during his earthly ministry in red ink. The first modern red-letter New Testament was published in 1899. Merely scanning the pages of the red-letter Gospels reveals that Jesus did a lot of speaking. Jesus was a teacher. The lessons Jesus taught when he spoke are critically important for those who love Jesus and who want to follow him.

Jesus is the source of our life. Jesus invites us to live like him. He not only gives us an example to follow through his actions, but he also teaches us about life—real life as God intended it from the beginning. Jesus gave many important lessons through parables.
Jesus wisely simplified the profound spiritual truths he shared in the form of relatable stories that are easy to understand. A parable is a tale about a simple, common subject to illustrate a deeper, valuable lesson. The source definition of the word “parable” means “a placement side by side for the purpose of comparison.”

One Christian teacher always presented his lessons in parables and stories, which his students listened to with pleasure—and occasional frustration, because they wanted something “deeper.” But their teacher was unmoved. To all their objections he would respond, "You have yet to understand that the shortest distance between a human being and truth is a story." Another time he said, "Do not despise the story. A lost gold coin is found by means of a penny candle; the deepest truth is found by means of a simple story."

Jesus told small stories with big ideas.

So, through the season of Lent in both Classic and NewDay Praise worship services, we are hosting a series entitled, “Small Stories, Big Ideas” to explore the following parables of Jesus:

March 1Lent I: The Great Dinner
March 8Lent II: The Sower
March 15Lent III: Building on a Rock
March 22Lent IV: The Mustard Seed
March 29Lent V: The Lamp
April 5Lent VI: The Prodigal.

Please join us as we consider the key life lessons Jesus taught. They will help us to follow Jesus faithfully and to enjoy the grace of God, the peace of Christ, and the hope of the Holy Spirit in our daily lives. I hope you will make special plans for worship through this special season and bring friends.

Go in peace. Go with God. And be well.

Shalom,

Charlie Wilfong
Senior Pastor

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