All stories begin as a kernel which develops into a bigger picture. One day we’re all going to tell a story about our lives. The little decisions we make today will determine the big story we’ll tell tomorrow.
PARABLES OF JESUS: HOW TO BE AMAZING
Sermon by Tom Fenske, Sunday, July 5, 2015
WHY JESUS USED PARABLES
Matthew 13:10-11 His disciples came and asked Him, “Why do you use parables when you talk to the people?” He replied, “You are permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven, but others are not.”
- STORIES DON’T JUST INFORM US, THEY FORM US
MUSTARD AND BREAD
Matthew 13:31-33 Here is another illustration Jesus used: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed planted in a field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches.” Jesus also used this illustration: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put only a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeated every part of the dough.”
- ORDINARY CHOICES LEAD TO POWERFUL CHANGE
FIVE WAYS TO MAKE BETTER (SMALL) CHOICES
1. EVALUATE YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES
Luke 18:8 I tell you, He will grant justice to them quickly! But when the Son of Man returns, how many will He find on the earth who have faith?
Habakkuk 2:14 For as the waters fill the sea, the earth will be filled with an awareness of the glory of the Lord.
2. HAVE PATIENCE
James 5:17 Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly that no rain would fall, none fell for three and a half years!
Psalm 40:1 I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry.
3. PLAN AHEAD
Luke 14:28-30 But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’
Psalm 20:4 May he grant your heart’s desires and make all your plans succeed.
4. REMEMBER YOU’RE NOT ALWAYS THE MAIN CHARACTER
Philippians 2:1 Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate?
James 3:13 If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom.
Proverbs 11:2 Pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom
5. TACKLE ONE THING AT A TIME
Hebrews 6:11 Our great desire is that you will keep on loving others as long as life lasts, in order to make certain that what you hope for will come true.
Luke 9:62 But Jesus told him, “Anyone who puts a hand to the plow and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God.”
Matthew 6:34 So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
- YOUR CHOICES ARE PART OF A BIGGER STORY
Matthew 13:34-35 Jesus always used stories and illustrations like these when speaking to the crowds. In fact, he never spoke to them without using such parables. This fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet: “I will speak to you in parables. I will explain things hidden since the creation of the world.”