Not only are stories fun, entertaining, engaging, and all around enjoyable, but they also are a powerful means of shaping our character and the way we see ourselves. Stories have the power, in the power of the Spirit, to change who someone becomes and how they act. In an excellent article titled, Reading as Parenting, The Christian Pundit elaborates on this very point.
Reading to our children shapes character.
Do you remember a storybook from your childhood? Think for a moment about how that story has shaped the way that you see life. Consciously or not, what we read as children forms our character by extolling the good and courageous and kind and exposing the evil and selfish. We have a comparatively limited time to teach our children, and help shape their thinking. Reading good stories out loud to them helps this.
Human beings are oriented towards stories, both telling and listening, and a good story can stick for life. It does not stick without shaping the mind that holds it. And it is sometimes a powerful tool for helping children see themselves. When a kid is being selfish and grumpy, you can say, “Remember Charlotte’s Web? Well, you’re sounding like Templeton, honey.” This is what Nathan did to David after his adultery, right? Told him a story to help him see his own sin? Sometimes the moral effect of a story is so deep that it changes how we think about our lives, and the effect is too broad to state. Putting quality stories into our children’s heads is a fundamental part of shaping character.
Stories not only entertain and engage, but they shape the very minds that are entertained and engaged by them. I highly recommend the entire article which can be found here.