Give us this Day our Daily Bread

September 12, 2011

The Parable (Story) of the Helicopter

The bible has many parables , and some are difficult to interpret. In biblical times, the parable was a common device for teaching important truths. Today, pastors recognize that parables are no longer a part of our culture, and often tell "stories", modern day parables. One of my favorites is the helicopter story.


A farmer is in Iowa during a flood. The river is Mississippi River is overflowing. Water is surrounding the farmer's home up to his front porch. As he is standing there, a boat comes up. The man in the boat says, “Jump in, and I’ll take you to safety.”
The farmer crosses his arms and says stubbornly, “Oh no thanks, I put my trust in God.” The boat goes away.
The water rises to the second story. Another boat comes up. The man says to the farmer, who is now at the second floor window, “Hurry, jump in. I’ll save you.”
The farmer again says, “Oh no thanks, I put my trust in God."

The boat goes away. Now the water is inching over the roof. As the farmer stands on the roof, a helicopter comes over, and drops a ladder. The pilot yells down to the farmer, “I'll save you. Climb the ladder.”
The farmer yells back, “Oh no thanks, I put my trust in God.”
The helicopter goes away. The water continues to rise and sweeps the farmer off the roof into the swiftly moving water. Unfortunately, he drowns.

The farmer goes to heaven. God sees him and says, “What are you doing here?”
The farmer says, “I put my trust in you, and you let me down.”
God says, “What do you mean, let you down? I sent you two boats and a helicopter!”

When we want help, we expect it to come in a certain way. In a way that fits within our current thinking and beliefs. If not, the solution may be rebuffed.

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