This post comes from Calvary Chapel Pastors
In 1965 Hollywood produced a film on the life of Jesus entitled The Greatest Story Ever Told. I remember seeing the film as a kid and being impacted by the portrayal of Jesus. To an eight- or nine-year-old Jesus seemed to be the most wonderful person who ever lived. Later in life I would come to know personally how accurate my youthful perceptions were. Jesus is indeed wonderful, and the great news is that He’s alive and well and doing the same kinds of things today that He was doing when He was physically here on earth, and we get to tell this story to our generation.
I emphasize the word story as a reminder to you that not only is this the greatest story ever, but it’s a story we get to share with others. I think most of us Christians know the importance of sharing our faith, desire to do so, and yet many times find ourselves struggling in our efforts. One of the things that I think can be tremendously helpful is to tell people Bible stories that the Holy Spirit can then apply to their lives.
A few months ago I was sitting having coffee in a place I go frequently because the coffee is good and it’s a great place to meet people. I’m always asking the Lord to bring about opportunities to talk with people when I’m there. So as I’m sitting there a very pretty young woman sat down across from me and asked if I could keep an eye on her drink while she stepped outside for a moment. I said sure and off she went. Sometime later she came back in, sat down, and occupied herself with something but didn’t pick up her drink. I finally said that I had kept a close eye on it and assured her that no one had touched it. She laughed and said that she was always a bit paranoid about something being put into her drink.
As we began to talk I asked her about her life and what it was that she did, assuming she would say she was a fashion model or actress or something similar. I was shocked when she told me she was a scientist! Wow, you don’t look like your stereotypical scientist, I said jokingly. After some time, she began to tell me how unhappy she was in her profession, saying she regretted spending so many years in school and possibly missing out on marriage and children, as well as other things. In essence, she said she was frustrated and her life was empty.
This is where the story comes in. I told her that there was a woman in the Bible who had felt just the same way she was feeling. She was intrigued and indicated that she was interested in hearing more. As we sat, I told her the story of the Samaritan woman that Jesus had met at the well of Sychar so many years ago. This was a woman who had come to draw water to quench her natural thirst, when this stranger, Jesus, says to her, “give me a drink.” The woman was shocked that a Jewish man was asking her, a Samaritan woman, for a drink because the Jews had no dealings with the Samaritans. So she asked how it could be that He, a Jew, was asking her, a Samaritan, for water? This is where Jesus spoke to her these immortal words, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘give me a drink,’ you would have asked Him and He would have given you living water.” The woman was perplexed and asked a few practical questions about how Jesus was going to get water from the well without anything to draw with. Then Jesus said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
I explained to her that when Jesus said, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again,” He was basically saying that there is nothing the world can offer that will satisfy us, and that true satisfaction and fulfillment can only be found in Christ. As I continued to tell her the story, tears began to flow freely down her cheeks, and when I suggested that maybe I should stop, she begged me to continue, saying these were like the words of life to her. Little did she know how true her words were.
So here’s the point: God has given us a book full of stories, true stories about how He works in people’s lives from generation to generation. People who might not be open to listening to a recitation of the four spiritual laws might very much be open to hearing a good story; you never know what the Lord might do with it. But to effectively tell the stories, we’ve got to know and experience them ourselves. Immerse yourself in the Greatest Story Ever Told, pray for divine appointments, and watch and see what the Lord will do.
continue reading the views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of Calvary Southampton