Retelling the tale: disciple-making through stories!by Cheryl Markland
School’s out and summer’s here! It’s time for a slower pace of life – time to recall and relive favorite summer memories and share them with your children. It’s time to tell a story!
As people, we are wired for stories. Drawings on cave walls tell the story of life lived in ancient civilizations. God could have sent Moses with a sermon, but instead He created biblical-sized stories to carry His message through history. The sounds and sights of the plagues, the overwhelming fear and sight of the approaching Egyptian army, the God-sized rescue as the sea parted, the daily gathering of the manna and the pillar of fire and cloud all tell the story of God’s provision and faithfulness to Israel. The story was so important that God commanded parents to teach it to their children and grandchildren (Deuteronomy 4:9). The story was living proof of God’s faithfulness, glory, trustworthiness and justice. The story carried weight that a simple list of attributes never could.
When we are actively listening to an engaging story, brain scans show activity in the areas of our brains that would be engaged if we were actually participating in the events of the story. Stories convey your history and what you value as worth remembering.
Do your children know the story of when you decided to become a Christ follower? Do they know of a time when God led you or another family member through a particularly challenging time? Can you recall a time like this? Do you need to pay more attention to God at work in your life so that you have stories to share?
As your ride to the beach, the mountains or the neighborhood pool, consider having a round robin storytelling session. Ideas for story topics could be: the time I learned to ride a bike, my favorite teacher, my favorite place to go on vacation, my best friend and I like to…, I know God is great because..., my favorite thing about VBS, my favorite verse. Stories are fun, free and priceless! Enjoy your favorite stories with your family this week!