Today’s reading brought me to Matthew 13, where Jesus beings teaching in parables. He tells one parable (The Parable of the Sower). Then his disciples ask why he teaches in parables. “And he answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. ” (Matthew 13:11) Jesus knew his audience would not fully understand his message in plain words so he converts the message into a story. After this, he even explains His first parable, that we are the sower as we spread His word. From this point, the rest of His parables are left up for us to glean the meanings.
Personally, the parables have always been one of my favorite parts of the bible. Jesus teaches by telling a story. This example has really caught on. Lawyers will often use a story in their opening remarks in a trial. Salesmen will use a story to explain and therefore sell their product. And of course good preachers will usually start their sermon with a story that connects or helps to explain their main message.
When I first began in the investments industry, part of my job was to present products as solutions to my clients. What I soon discovered was that I had a different level of conviction with some products vs. others. Of course some of that conviction was based on the quality of the products, but often you could take two extremely similar products and put them side by side and I would have a stronger conviction of one over another. It soon became apparent to me that the stronger conviction was for the quality products that I had personally met the representative or analyst. Once I knew the person, I had more conviction when I presented the product.
This is very much like sharing the Word of Christ. When I only knew about Jesus, and had a belief in Him, I had no conviction to share His word. It was just something I believed in. But once I personally knew Christ, my conviction to share His love grew. Now because of my personal relationship with Jesus, I want to share His story all the time.
If you want people to know about Christ, teach them about Him. But if you want people to share the Love of Christ, introduce them to Him so they can have a personal relationship with Him.
In His Service