The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are stories of Jesus, and within these stories we find that Jesus himself was a story teller. When Jesus wanted to catch people’s attention or wanted them to better understand the Kingdom of God, he told them stories called parables.
Jesus’ parables are little stories taken from every day life. They are about ordinary people, things, and
events that the people around him would have been very familiar. However, his stories are far from
ordinary. Each parable has an extra-ordinary
twist to it, a surprise that catches our attention, perhaps unnerves us, and if
we are open, invites us to deeper understanding of life, ourselves, and God.
Parables also tend to evade a one-size-fits-all “interpretation” or understanding. There are many layers to Jesus’ parables—both for us personally and communally. That being said, the parables usually have these characteristics in common:
- They invite us to ponder, what does it mean to live in the Kingdom of God?
- They are stories of abundance. There is always an overflow of grace, generosity, forgiveness, and love in the parables.
- The parables reflect God’s faithfulness to us and call forth our faithfulness to God.
In the coming weeks, we will immerse ourselves in eight of Jesus’ parables. May we be blessed with the abundance Jesus offers us in these stories!