Teaching through Story

A. W. Tozer was a renowned pastor, teacher, and writer. He wrote about God with clarity and conviction. Remembering to do what many heady authors are prone to forget, he often used the power of story and illustration to drive home his point.

When you’re trying to write something that will reach people, you need to go behind their minds—you must reach their imaginations.

From Tozer’s The Counselor:

Because He is loving and kind and friendly, the Holy Spirit may be grieved. We grieve Him by ignoring Him, by resisting Him, by doubting Him, by sinning against Him, by refusing to obey Him, by turning our backs on HIm. He can be grieved because He is loving, and there must be love present before there can be grief.

Suppose you had a seventeen-year-old son who began to go bad. He rejected your counsel and wanted to take things into his own hands. Suppose that he joined up with a young stranger from another part of the city and they got into trouble.

You were called down to the police station. Your boy—and another boy whom you had never seen—sat there in handcuffs.

You know how you would feel about it. You would be sorry for the other boy—but you don’t love him because you don’t know him. With your own son, your grief would penetrate to your heart like a sword. Only love can grieve. If those two boys were sent off to prison, you might pity the boy you didn’t know, but you would grieve over the boy you knew and loved. A mother can grieve because she loves. If you don’t love, you can’t grieve.