2 Small Beginnings Definition of a parable Parables are in the realm of figurative or tropical language where communication takes place through images and the suggestive power of language rather than through literal and precise speech. (John R. Donahue, Sj.)
3 Small Beginnings Definition of a parable Parable uses images as metaphors or similes to bring across a point of reality that is more often than not shocking for the hearers because it seems incredulous that certain things can happen the way it does, and cause us, the readers, to consider that there is another way of thinking about life.
4 Small Beginnings Mark 4:8 “And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” (ESV)
5 Small Beginnings Matthew 20:8 “And when evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, “Call the labourers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last, up to the first.” (ESV)
6 Small Beginnings Matthew 13:31-32 “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and become a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” (ESV)
9 1. Beginnings are usually small Growth is a process that takes place over a period of time.Growth can often come across small, insignificant and seem lacking in progress.
10 2. Growth involves faith Seed sown along the path No understanding Evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in the heartSeed sown on rocky groundHears and immediately receives with joyNot rootedFalls away when persecution or tribulation arisesSeed sown among thornsHears the wordCares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it provides unfaithfulSeed sown on good groundHears the word and understands itBears fruit
11 2. Growth involves faithHebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (ESV)Our job is not to question whether growth takes place.Our job is to sow in faith, and trust in God’s season and timing.
12 3. Small beginnings can have great impact Matthew 13:31-32“The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and become a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” (ESV)
13 3. Small beginnings can have great impact Ezekiel 17:22-24“Thus says the Lord God: “I myself will take a sprig from the lofty top of the cedar and will set it out. I will break off from the topmost of its young twigs a tender one, and I myself will plant it on a high and lofty mountain. On the mountain height of Israel will I plant it, that it may bear branches and produce fruit and become a noble cedar. And under it will dwell every kind of bird; in the shade of its branches birds of every sort will nest. And all the trees of the field shall know that I am the Lord; I will bring low the high tree, and make high the low tree, dry up the green tree, and make the dry tree flourish. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it.” (ESV)