The most effective way to convey a message is through an analogy. Analogies are used to illustrate similarity.
Church pastors are masters of analogies.
Church of the Cross pastor Andy Harris shared a tale on Facebook about a woman who left her church after being burned by members of the congregation – does this sound familiar?
Pastor Andy’s story doesn’t give a real-life example, but its consistency and the analogy it draws are enough to sell us on its message regardless. His viral post has been shared more than 231,000 times.
A woman approached her pastor to let him know she was leaving his church, according to the story.
“Ah! I observed a woman gossiping about another member; a hypocrite; the worship team living incorrectly; people checking their phones during service; and many other issues in your church.”
Although he was saddened by her explanation, the pastor wasn’t surprised because he had heard it all before. Therefore, he let her go. However, not before doing him one last favor.
Before you leave, I would like you to fill a glass with water and walk around the cathedral three times without dropping a drop. If you wish, you may leave afterward.”
That was an unusual request, but the woman thought it would be easy.
He instructed her to walk three times around the church with her full glass of water in hand, and then return to him.
The preacher reminded her of one final thing before she left:
“I’d like to ask you one more question before you leave. Did you notice anyone gossiping as you walked around the church?””””
She replied, “No.”.
Then, he asked if she had seen any hypocrites or seen anyone talking on their phones.
“No,” said the woman again.
Even nonbelievers roared “amen” when the pastor delivered this paradigm-shifting, thought-provoking allegory.
“You were paying attention to the glass so you wouldn’t trip and spill any water.” Our lives are the same way. While keeping our eyes on Jesus, we don’t have time to see other people’s mistakes. “We’ll help them while focusing on our own spiritual growth.”