Stories are powerful. They tap into the emotions a lot more quickly and effectively than raw data. Because they are both effective and efficient it is easy to rely on them too heavily. I have heard sermons that had many powerful stories in them but in the mix of the story telling I wasn’t really sure where to find scripture in what I was hearing. I have also heard sermons and probably even preached them that were so dry that I thought what they really needed were a few more stories.
But stories can only take you so far…well, quite far, actually. Like anything that works, they can become a crutch that hobbles us and cripples us from tapping into the raw power of scripture. Often even in scripture itself raw truths are framed up by story and for a good reason…because stories work. Our database of stories must keep us coming back to scripture. If we don’t do that, we might become a renowned raconteur but it will lack the real panache that comes from the deep well of the inspired God story.