I want to tell you a story…
That was Max Bygraves’ line, delivered in his characteristic way, which enticed you into a humorous account of something or other, with built in digressions. It was a story to entertain.
JK Rowling wrote a story, now legendary, which started life in her head, appeared onto paper in a cafe in Scotland, and is now part of many people’s imagination and landscape.
Jesus told stories – some of them were recorded, so we have read and read them. They were like Max’a stories, in that they engage and draw you in; they were like JK’s in that you ponder them, you want to know what happens next, and you anticipate a good ending.
But Jesus stories were subversive, life-disrupting, and life-giving. His life was the same. It gave meaning to his stories, and his stories gave meaning to his life. Responding to his stories draws you into his life, the life of God. The words of God paint the substance of the word of God, which/who is alive! Beware!
I don’t think Max Bygraves’ stories point to anything; JK Rowling’s story of Harry Potter, as became clearer and clearer, parallels the story of Jesus, in respect to his redemptive work, though God is absent from the narrative.
Like Mr Benn stepping into the changing room, or Peter and Lucy stepping into the wardrobe, you have to step into the story of Jesus and it becomes your story.