The followers came to Jesus and asked, “Why do you use stories to teach the people?” (Matthew 13:10)
Why, indeed? Jesus spoke in parables often, connecting something people would know to something they do not understand, so they could learn. His teaching style met them where they were to take them somewhere better, closer to him.
Jesus’ explanation reveals his desire for people to know him. Those who have understanding will be given more, and they will have all they need. But those who do not have understanding, even what they have will be taken away from them. This is why I use stories to teach the people: They see, but they don’t really see. They hear, but they don’t really hear or understand. (Matthew 13:12-13)
We have to put on our thinking caps for this one…which is often the case with Jesus’ teachings. He wants us to understand, but he doesn’t want to give it to us in such an easy way that we don’t have to engage and commit to understanding. He wants our desire. But I can hear the disciples now. They ask, “Why?” Jesus explains, and his explanation could easily prompt another “Why?” It becomes a conversation of “whys,” because isn’t that how Jesus often communicates his answers? He often answers questions with questions, and even when he uses statements, they are full of question-prompting mysteries, connections, and illustrations.
Having a conversation with Jesus is like being an inquisitive 3-year-old who experiences the world and wants to know it better. Jesus isn’t offended by our questions, as long as our motives are as pure as a child’s. He wants us to be inquisitive. He wants us to seek him. He wants to reveal himself to us.
Why should you seek Jesus?