Have you ever sat around a campfire and had someone tell a story? The person telling the story is usually engaging, drawing you in to the story, at least hopefully they are drawing you in to the story. They have your full attention, you join in the story and you want to know more.
That’s what a storyteller does, they share stories of what they’ve experienced, or heard about and draw others in to the story. They share their own thoughts and experiences, or knowledge.
A sharer is the person you see on Facebook that re-posts images, scriptures, posts, etc without any thought. They see the image as inspirational, or comments they think are good and say things that they would want to say, but could not put words to it. Yes, I share things on Facebook as do a lot of people. When I do share, I try to add a comment as to why I am sharing it and it’s meaning to me. I add a story to it, trying to draw the person in.
While sharing has its place, it cannot compete with storytelling. Storytelling makes it personal.
When I teach, I often try to include a personal story to relate to the Biblical lesson being taught. It helps show the children that I am human, but also that I see God working in my life. It’s not just a story from a long time ago, God still touches lives today. This past Sunday I was kneeling (on one knee) at the table sharing the story of the rich young ruler, using gold coins and other items to emphasize the message. Fluctuating my voice, getting them to read portions of the Scripture reference, bringing them into the story and the lesson. It wasn’t just reading a passage and asking questions. I could tell by the way they were staring at me, leaning forward, listening, that they were engaged and I was drawing them in to the story, the message.
Stories are important to children, and adults. Especially stories about what God is doing in people’s lives today. Not just the drug addict, alcoholic, or serious offender that God redeems, but also the “average” person and how God works in their daily lives. It engages them and shows them God at work in the lives of people.
I keep saying that people want to be where God is working. If God is working, then share your story. Be a storyteller! Don’t just share someone else’s thought. If you cannot share even a little of what God is doing, then I personally have to wonder if God is doing anything, or have we become complacent to God working around us?
Share your story today… for if we don’t share…. we may force the rocks to cry out. While that would be cool (and kind of scary), it would be very sad, because God’s people would have been silenced.
If we can’t share a story of how God is moving in our lives to the children, then how will they know that God cares about them and is working in their lives?
If you complain that you need more people serving, then share your story. Engage them, draw them in and let them experience God moving as you see Him at work in your life and ministry.