Resonate: A Musical Documentary On God And Creativity

Day 8 of 10 • This day’s reading


“Jesus the Storyteller”

Stories have held an important position in cultures around the globe throughout history. From ancient poets to the cinematic blockbusters of today, people crave a good story. When Jesus was walking from town to town with his disciples, he had to use stories called parables to communicate truths about the kingdom of God to his followers. Parables were common teaching tools at the time and Jesus, the good teacher that he is, used language and images to which his listeners could relate. This does not, however, mean that every listener grasped the depth of each story.

In Matthew 13 his disciples ask him why, and we might have the same question; why use parables at all? Why not just tell us exactly what you mean? Jesus’ answer might seem harsh here. He says, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.” Does this mean that his stories are only meant for certain people? Not at all! Jesus’ response in the Message translation uses the word “insight” rather than secrets. The disciples’ hearts were eager to glean a deeper meaning from Jesus’ stories, but not everyone listens with the same attitude. Did it stop Jesus from telling stories?

Similarly, as a creative person, not everyone is going to feel inspiration when they experience your art. Some may even openly criticize you for it. As we discussed earlier, creating is a risk. It is an exercise in faith. Should you stop creating because some people don’t get it? Did Jesus?