Why Use Stories?

God has shaped people for stories—even adults. If asked to name a favorite childhood story, most people will quickly respond. What is it about stories that make us remember them? They engage our imaginations. They're fun. They provide a visual framework to make truths stick based on the locations, characters, events, and dialogue in the story.

Is it any wonder why over 50 percent of the Bible is narrative? God wrote it that way so the 90 percent of the ancient world who were non-readers could remember it in a story form. God was packaging His truth for centuries to come. Can you even imagine the Bible without stories in it? Can you imagine a missionary telling about his or her missions work without using stories? We want to hear the facts through the stories.

God designed us to use all 5 senses in learning. Active listening helps us imagine ourselves inside a story being told. Seeing the drama of a story helps us picture the action. If we touch items connected with a story, we can associate the story with things from our world. We can literally or figuratively (imagination) use smell and taste senses with stories.

Think of some of your favorite Bible stories and ponder: Why are these my favorites? Now consider missionaries' stories you've heard. Ask yourself: Why do I remember these stories? What impact might the stories you tell to children have on them?


by Janet Erwin


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