This Sunday I’m beginning a sermon series entitled, Felt Board Basics: Rediscovering the Tales Told to Jesus. The impetus for the series comes from reading Old Testament Bible stories to my two young daughters, Malia and Katharine. Indeed, these are the same stories that shaped a young boy named Jesus who couldn’t get enough of hanging around the temple. Sadly, other than sitting in Old Testament survey classes in graduate school, I had not heard some of these stories (Jonah, Neduchadnezzer, Abraham and Issac, etc…) in many years. As I read these stories to my daughters and listen to their interpretation of their meanings, I’m amazed at how deep and challenging the narratives are. And it shocks me how and when the echoes of these stories resound in the life and teachings of Jesus.
I remember my faithful Bible teachers as a child placing figures on felt board and bringing the stories to life. I am grateful to those women. Now I’m grateful to my girls for showing me the life in those stories.
It appears to me that familiarity breeds familiarity, but not necessarily understanding. That’s what has happened to the great stories of God’s faithful, reluctantly faithful, and unfaithful people chronicled in the Old Testament. My hope is to reclaim the very stories that informed the mission and ministry of a young boy in Nazareth named Jesus. If you’re in Houston, come by and join us!