One Metaphor Is Not Enough

Furrowing my brow, straining for clarity, I peered into young faces and saw what I’d been hoping for — understanding!

My assignment this week?  Teach five of Jesus’ “I Am” statements, mind-blowing truth about a God with skin on who used words to explain His purpose and His power in a monumental leap from the known to the unknown.

But, how is it — in  my kitchen, in my mini-van, sitting at my desk — that Jesus is Shepherd and Bread and Life?

How is He Light and Way?
Door and Vine?

I know the truth of it because, there it is — in my Bible in red letters.
And if I look carefully, I see it, also, in my daily experience:
His rod and staff, comforting, guiding;
His nourishing “enough-ness”;
The way He pours life into my death and shines truth like a spotlight on all my shadowy places.

At Day Camp this week, I have loved the daily challenge of putting words around these thoughts, words the right size for a four-year-old that will also capture the imagination of his ten-year-old sister . . . and while we’re at it, can we make it relevant for their mother who is sitting in the pew beside them?


Teaching the Bible at Day Camp, “shushing” the talkers, patting the fuzzy summer crew cuts, thanking the lunch ladies who showed up on Tuesday with pizza and popsicles, and loving the volunteers who multiply mini-bagels and goldfish into a daily feast, I marvel that Jesus multiplied metaphors to teach us His ways;  that He ransacked His holy thesaurus and bent over backwards just to describe the inexhaustible nature of His love and provision for His very own people.

Because He is God, because He is man, because the truth is just so immense, one metaphor is not enough.

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17 thoughts on “One Metaphor Is Not Enough”

  1. “He ransacked His holy thesaurus and bent over backwards just to describe the inexhaustible nature of His love and provision for His very own people”–love this!!!!!!!

    I love words and that really spoke to me–Hope your weekend is blessed–


  2. God is full of depth so one metaphor is not enough. Was the day camp in your home? It looks like a very intimate setting. I appreciate how you need to think about Jesus in the context of children and adults. Only God change you the understanding you need. Blessed you shared this at The Weekend Brew.


    1. Day Camp was at my church, which is a small village fellowship on a peninsula. So, yes, very intimate with lots of extended family attending, kids accompanied by young mums who also needed to hear the truth.


  3. I love the line “ransacked His holy thesaurus”! I’m glad Day Camp is going well! Keep working those metaphors so that little minds and hearts understand love with skin on.


  4. Don’t need a metaphor here. He got nailed to a cross so I don’t have to, and I’m cool with that.

    And I do appreciate it.

    But I loved your beautifully written post!

    yeah, and here from Inspire Me Monday.


  5. Ooh, yes. This is so true, Michele: “One metaphor is not enough.” We all experience God in at least slightly different ways, and what speaks to one person might not to another. Or even to ourselves at different seasons. So God has it all covered!

    Liked by 1 person

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