Storytelling Lay Servant Course Assignments

Storytelling Lay Servant class.


1. Read the book: Identify quotes that are important to you but you might wish to refer to in class … why are they important to you? List questions that you might wish to ask in class. You may be called upon to share one of your quotes in class.
Extra credit: Email those quotes and questions to me in advance at (With a single day for class, there will not be time to discuss many of these during the class. So this is the best way to share them and have that discussion.)

2. Brainstorm lists – start on your “story box” – story tellers need a collection of stories to tell.
Make lists of the following for stories – no one but you will read these lists. (I may ask you to show the pages to me to prove that you’ve begun the assignment.) They will remain private and you can be very honest. Choose your three favorites on each list that you would be willing to share in class; you may be called upon to share one from each list with the class, so consider which one that might be. Keep listing till you have ten … usually the last few will provide the most value.

1. Ten jokes or funny stories.
2. Ten inspiring quotes or stories.
3. Ten painful moments in your life.
4. Name ten moments of great happiness in your life.
5. Name ten triumphant moments that inspire you, whether they are your own or those of others.
6. Name ten moments when love for God filled your heart.
7. Name ten lessons you learned by experience, and perhaps the hard way.
8. Name ten regrets you have about how you have lived your faith and wish you had done better.
9. Name ten hopes you have for your own life to be the best it can be. How could you be a better person?
10. Name ten rules or principles that help your faith as you grow as a disciple or guide you as a Christian.
11. Name ten hopes you have for your church in the future … changes you would like to see.
12. Name ten memories from your own childhood.
13. Name ten stories your family has told you or about your family (other than about you)
14. Name ten favorite scriptures to share with others. Tell why they are a favorite of yours, and link it to a personal experience.
15. Name ten favorite hymn or song quotes that touch you emotionally. Tell why this touches your heart and link it to a personal experience.

3. Get the latest copy of the Upper Room … each daily devotion is a personal story linked to a text.

Read through the devotions, at least one each day, and identify the elements below for each each one:
1. The text and the “Thought For The Day” (Mark with a *)
2. The conflict or human need/problem (mark with N/P).
3. The suggested solution or advice (mark with S).
4. Does the need/problem and the solution correlate with the text, in your opinion? (Mark with a plus or minus) Why or why not?
5. Do you have a story from your life that would illustrate the need/problem or the solution? (Write a few words in the margin to remember it.)
You may be asked to share your favorite devotion in class.
Consider writing a devotion for the Upper Room.
4. Class assignments from the book:
Plan to fulfill the following assignments during our class given in the teaching plan.
“Each Lay Servant will
– Tell a brief story from personal experience.
– develop and retell a brief story based on a parable of Jesus (from the list below).
– relate in a small group setting, a personal account of a spiritual event.
– select a story to be developed and then told during the final session.
– offer support to other participants.”

Select one Parable of Jesus from the gospel of Matthew listed below for your assignment above.

DO NOT analyze, explain the parable or exegete the text … tell a story, preferably from your own life, that is an example of the parable.
Parables of Jesus in Matthew (from a list in Wikipedia)
03 The Lamp under a Bushel Matthew 5:14–15
07 The Wise and the Foolish Builders Matthew 7:24–27
08 New Wine into Old Wineskins Matthew 9:17–17
09 Parable of the strong man Matthew 12:29–29
10 Parable of the Sower Matthew 13:3–9
11 The Tares Matthew 13:24–30
13 Parable of the Mustard Seed Matthew 13:31–32
14 The Leaven Matthew 13:33–33
15 Parable of the Pearl Matthew 13:45–46
16 Drawing in the Net Matthew 13:47–50
17 The Hidden Treasure Matthew 13:44–44
19 The Lost Sheep   Matthew 18:10–14
20 The Unforgiving Servant Matthew 18:23–35
28 The Workers in the Vineyard Matthew 20:1–16
29 The Two Sons Matthew 21:28–32
30 The Wicked Husbandmen Matthew 21:33–41
31 The Great Banquet Matthew 22:1–14
32 The Budding Fig Tree Matthew 24:32–35
33 The Faithful Servant Matthew 24:42–51
34 The Ten Virgins Matthew 25:1–13
35 The Talents   Matthew 25:14–30
36 The Sheep and the Goats Matthew 25:31–46
Extra credit: Email these assigned stories to me at if you would like suggestions and feedback after the class. (With a single day for class, there will not be time to discuss many of these in detail during the class. So this is the best way to share them and have that discussion.)
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